One of our generations greatest saints has passed from his earthly life to his heavenly home. We knew him as pastor to pastors, gifted linguist and Bible translator. He was a teacher, author, husband, father, grandfather, brother, and friend. We heard about his walk with God in his raspy voice of wisdom, we read it with clarity in his many books and especially in The Message, we saw it in his daily routines, and we noticed it in his marriage and family life. He willingly shared his wealth of insight with all who were in earshot, who with open hearts were ready to listen and receive. His life with God was rich, earthy, abundant, and contagious.
He never forced his way on anyone, but instead, he kept his words, his life and his messages always invitational, gracious, warm, and deep. He was not perfect. He owned his weaknesses, imperfections, and vulnerabilities. His dress code was simple, his office was functional, his home was hospitably and spiritually beautiful. The indelible impact of his life is clearly upon today’s Christian Church and will remain fruitful and for generations to come.
I am just one of the scores of grateful recipients of the encouraging words of this amazing saint – in his prolific writing, his phenomenal work on The Message, his handwritten notes of graced encouragement, his openness to sharing meals and conversations, and his lakeside hospitality with his beloved wife and life partner, Jan. Many others have and will eulogize this godly man, Eugene Peterson, and his memorial service will be a fitting closure to a life well lived. Thankfully, his legacy will live on in the hearts, lives, and ministries of his students, congregants, readers of his tomes, and his many dearly devoted family members, colleagues, and friends.
Thank you, God, for creating, blessing, empowering, and multiplying the life and ministry of Eugene Peterson. To You alone belongs all the glory, honor, and praise! Amen.