Eugene Peterson On Love

These quotes are taken from Eugene Peterson's book, Christ Plays In Ten Thousand Places...

"But love is one of the slipperiest words in the language. There is no other word in our society more messed up, misunderstood, perverted, and misused as the word "love."

Complicating things further, it is a word terribly vulnerable to cliché, more often than not flattened into non-meaning by chatter and gossip.

 It is all me-directed. It is all self. The largeness of love is reduced to the mouse hole of ego.

 It is often used by the same person and in the same conversation in self-contradicting ways - seriously and frivolously, soberly and sentimentally, thoughtfully and teasingly. 

It is used in the worship of a holy God and as a euphemism for loveless sex. 

It is used to reveal heart intimacies and commitments and as a cover for telling every sort and variety of lie.
 An incalculable amount of violence, both emotional and physical, occurs in relationships begun in love. 

In no other human experience do we fail so frequently, get hurt so badly, suffer so excruciatingly and get deceived so cruelly as in love.

 Still, we continue to long for love, dream of it, attempt it. 

1st edition (publ. Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
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Walker Percy titled one of his novels Love in the Ruins, an epitaph far too many in our community can claim for their own. 

So when the men and women of the Christian community are given the responsibility for telling one another that God loves them, that he commanded every one of us to love one another, and when we assume responsibility for giving guidance and instruction in the life of love, we know we have no easy task. 

In fact, it is difficult to imagine a more formidable, seemingly impossible, task. 

Because of the enormous importance this has for the way we live, it is important to get it right.

 We need to listen attentively to every conversation, read discerningly every book, if we hope ever to discern the truth and implications of the love word." 
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