Monday, April 17, 2006

Peterson on perseverance

This is a good quote from Eugene Peterson, A Long Obedience in the Same Direction (ch. 11, Psalm 129, pp. 128-129):
The central reality is the personal, unalterable, persevering commitment that God makes to us. Perseverance is not the result of our determination, it is the result of God's faithfulness. We survive in the way of faith not because we have extraordinary stamina but because God is righteous. Christian discipleship is a process of paying more and more attention to God's righteousness and less and less attention to our own; finding the meaning of our lives not by probing our moods and motives and morals but by believing in God's will and purposes; making a map of the faithfulness of God, not charting the rise and fall of our enthusiasms. It is out of such a reality that we acquire perseverance.
I read this last night and it just jumped out of me. It's not about us, it's about God. I found the idea of making a map of God's faithfulness resonated especially with me.

Psalm 129 is one of the Psalms of Ascents -- the psalmist says the wicked have afflicted him from his youth, but the Lord is faithful. It's good to remember, to focus on God's faithfulness instead of myself.

1 comment:

bluggier said...

Linda, this is one of those concepts that by far most people don't get, and will never understand. And, there are some who don't yet get it, but are wrestling with the concept, knowing that what they know isn't cutting it and they want something better.
I'm still a wrestler. I don't fully get it, and wish I did. One of these days....