Saturday, February 06, 2010

Rugged, but worthwhile reading

Earlier this year, First Things, a Catholic publication founded by Richard John Neuhaus, began hosting a Protestant group blog, Evangel, featuring some of evangelical Christianity’s most influential writers. I’m almost always challenged and edified by the content there, though reading it can be pretty intense and time demanding. But I’m consistently the better for having read it.

On Friday, one of the regular contributors, Paul McCain, a Lutheran, posted this quote from Augustine:

“When you have to listen to abuse, that means you are being buffeted by the wind. When your anger is roused, you are being tossed by the waves. So when the winds blow and the waves mount high, the boat is in danger, your heart is imperiled, your heart is taking a battering. On hearing yourself insulted, you long to retaliate; but the joy of revenge brings with it another kind of misfortune: shipwreck. Why is this? Because Christ is asleep in you. What do I mean? I mean you have forgotten His presence. Rouse him, then; remember him, let him keep watch within you, pay heed to him…A temptation arises: it is the wind. It disturbs you: it is the surging of the sea. This is the moment to awaken Christ and let him remind you of those words: “Who can this be? Even the winds and the sea obey him!”

St. Augustine; Sermons 63.1-3

What a great thought, to remember Christ’s presence within when tempted or tried.Or better yet, to not forget in the first place.

2 comments:

Paul McCain said...

Pastor Daily,

Thanks for your nice note about Evangel. It is a fascinating collection of people posting and I enjoy being among them. We do have the occasional, predictable, dust-up between Lutheranism and Calvinism, but overall there are fascinating posts reflecting the rather wide ranging backgrounds and vocations and passions of our participants.

The peace of Christ be with you, and your readers.

Pastor McCain

Pastor Michael said...

Pastor McCain,

Thanks for dropping in and commenting! I have to admit I particularly enjoy your posts at Evangel. As a pastor of a congregation on the relaxed end of the liturgical spectrum, I appreciate your insights into the meaning behind the observances in the church year. In addition, your posts on other subjests are uniformly thought-provoking in the best sense.

If only I could figure out how you and others in such high-profile positions can post so voluminously and thoughtfully at the same time.

Blessings,
Michael