Cover Image: On Living Well

On Living Well

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Member Reviews

★★★★★ The publisher provided a copy for review
This series of short essays will make you think. If you want meditations to take you through an afternoon or evening, consider picking up Peterson's volume. 

Just when you think life is out of control or outcomes are inevitable, when you think you're restricted by your choices or destined to fail, the author offers another point of view. Hope comes from relationship with God, not just from past decisions. 

Well worth keeping on your desk when you need another voice inside your head. Well worth putting on that "to do when I have 10 minutes" pile - and opening up when you need a word of encouragement.

Highly recommended.
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As a new reader of Eugene Peterson i was excited to dive into this book and was not disappointed with Peterson's commentary on living inspired by the word.
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On Living Well surprised me with its short readings, but not its wisdom. I'm so grateful for Eugene Peterson's gentle and profound words, his teaching and his heartfelt call to live well. The foreward to this book by Rich Villados was excellent too, as the perfect introduction to Eugene's writing here. I'd highly recommend this one.
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In  On Living Well, Eugene Peterson the Bible translator, practical theologian, and professor of spiritual formation steps aside as Eugene Peterson the pastor speaks with compassion and clarity into his readers’ most needful places. Wisdom from a lifetime of both following and shepherding encourages Christians to “start with God” in order to produce lives worth watching. To that end, our sanctification process will carry us, fueled by the Spirit, through the movements of both praise and prayer and through the rigors of blessed community.

Peterson warns believers against becoming “cut flowers” who have lost touch with our roots, withering quickly, starved for nourishment. This collection of brief reflections on wisdom for walking in the way of Jesus is excellent night-stand reading, but the content is also substantial fodder for thematic study. Living well requires traveling well, and we do that best with our feet “on the life path, all radiant from the shining of [God’s] face.” Even now, Peterson’s words continue to show us the way to that path.
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Eugene Peterson has been on my radar for years; I worked at a Christian bookstore during high school (#bestjobever), just a few years after "The Message" was first released in 1993--so, it was certainly a big trend. Certainly visibly unmissable, whether or not one read it!

Whatever one's take on "The Message," Peterson's work is not limited to just that. Only within the last few years have I realized he wrote a lot more books, and this new one (published posthumously, as he passed away in 2018) provides a solid introduction to his writing/speaking on a wide span of topics. "On Living Well" could be used in turn as a devotional or as an introduction/inspiration for further reading on a given topic. Each "section" (chapter?) is typically just a page or two long and can be read in a short period. There isn't a "narrative," per se ... it really is a topical collection, much like the "CS Lewis Reader" or similar. I prefer the more narrative style so would probably focus on other Peterson works to read more fully, but this is a good start and helpful for what it is.

4/5 stars.

(Side note: Apparently I can't get away from Rich Villodas, LOL. I read Daniel Grothe's "The Power of Place" over the weekend, and Villodas wrote the foreword there; same goes here for Eugene Peterson's "On Living Well." Baader-Meinhof phenomenon, anyone?)

I received an eARC of the book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.
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One of my treasured items is my late grandmother’s copy of The Message. As I read through On Living Well, I thought of her often. These nuggets of wisdom would have been daily devotional material for her, varying in topic and depth . Peterson is great simplifying a complex concept while leaving you thinking about it as you attempt to turn the page.

Thanks to Waterbrook and NetGalley for an ARC of this book.
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I remember when and where I was when I purchased, The Message” bible. I was thirty something years old in a Kmart in Sumter, SC. I was by myself and had to have it. I’d just been standing there in the aisle, reading and reading this new translation. It felt new? More real? So that’s where I was when I learned about the man who dared to make learning scripture more enjoyable for me. 
So having said that, I knew I would be encouragement by this little book. It’s a reminder straight from Eugene Peterson that God gives us an invitation that only he can offer about how we can live. This book was made up of an extensive archive of two decades of weekly letters EP sent to his members. He shares many encouraging insights. He talks of wisdom, prayer and biblical bold living throughout this and I am better for it.  
I don’t have to stay the way I am because Christ is in the business of transforming me. 
I highly recommend this short, simple to understand blessing. 
Thanks WaterBrook via Netgalley. #OnLivingWell #NetGalley
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Eugene Peterson, well-known author and Presbyterian pastor, died in 2018.  In this book editor Paul Pastor has compiled unpublished material from Pastor Peterson's archives.  Much of it comes from a weekly letter he sent to the members of his congregation.  All the entries are short, ranging from several pages to less than one page.  It could easily be used in a daily devotional time.

On Living Well: Brief Reflections on Wisdom for Walking in the Way of Jesus
As always, Peterson's work does not disappoint.  He had a way with words and the ability to use fresh analogies and creative ways to illustrate biblical truths.  He challenges the reader to examine his or her life in the light of the Gospel and to grow more and more Christlike.  These essays are brief and easy to read, but deep, and they are filled with the hope and excitement that should characterize the Christian journey.

The writings are grouped into five themes:

*On Beginnings

*On Simplicity

*On Prayers and Praises

*On Mercies
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This book is an invitation to live well. Notice life and how people are living it, and learn from it. While ordinary life may seem to be nothing special to most people, learning to notice the meaning in ordinary life can have a special impact. In this never before published collection of reflections and spiritual thoughts from the late Eugene Peterson, we learn of how he manages to draw profound spiritual insights from ordinary life. Just like creation, he manages to focus on the Word as the beginning of all life and laments at how the world treats too casually the dignity of life. Peterson takes us to ponder on the significance of the beginning of the Word without which there is no beginning for any life. He connects birth to our second birth in Christ. Affirming our calling in Christ, we are reminded that spiritual warfare is real and requires believers to be constantly ready to shine for Christ. Yet, he reminds us that Christians are like round holes trying to fit into a square-pegged world. Written like a devotional, the book contains spiritual gems taken from Peterson's two decades of his weekly newsletter he circulated to his Church members at Christ Our King Presbyterian Church. Along with unpublished material from his archives and sermons, the publishers have compiled them into five headings:

1) On Beginnings
2) On Simplicity
3) On Prayers and Praise
4) On Mercies
5) On Glories

There are rich insights pertaining to religion, simple living, ordinary care, thinking/thanking, direction, and anything that can be perceived in ordinary lives. Written in short paragraphs, the chapters read like snippets of wisdom from the desert fathers of old. Peterson's thoughts may not appear like stories of interest but they flow like waters of refreshment from a wise spiritual fountain. For instance, take his perception of prayer as a matter of answering instead of asking, and replying instead of requesting. From the Word, God has already spoken. We need to do the responding instead of persisting in vending machine-like prayers. One of Peterson's favourite topics for reflection is worship. He often joins the act of worship in our everyday living, something he calls "inner coherence." We worship when God's Word is glorified. We worship when we bless others in God's Name. We worship when we gather in the Name of Christ to honour God together. We worship when Truth is proclaimed. Worship is about a hearty response. Wow. That really challenges a believer to live a life of worship seven days a week. 

When I take a step back from the individual chapters and see the five movements of living well, I can see where the compiler of these quotes is coming from. Like moving from Genesis to Revelation, from birth to death to resurrection, the collection of sayings help us realize that whatever the beginning, whatever the end, and whatever that is in-between, there is always God's grace to us in living well. Grace begins with God, that we are able to do good because God is good. For He has made us in His own image. In contrast to a world of performance and the constant struggle for more, living well does not necessarily require us to be frantic achievers. Instead, simple living suffices, as far as living for God is concerned. Peterson reminds us that "the less busy we are, the more free we are to do the essentially Christian acts." How true! In the section on "Prayers and Worship," Peterson reminds us that worship is every day of the week, not just on Sundays. Toward the end, Peterson brings us back to another of his favourite topics: Resurrection. He makes a difference between consumerism and communion, reminding us that the resurrection is the constant rejoinder to heaven. For Christ came to give us of Himself, that all who believe in Him shall have eternal life. 

Those who have read Peterson's books will be happy to have this book on their shelves. For those who have not read Peterson's, this book is very much an appetizer for his other books.

Eugene H. Peterson, translator of The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language, is the beloved author of more than thirty books, including Every Step an Arrival, As Kingfishers Catch Fire, and other spiritual classics such as Run with the Horses and A Long Obedience in the Same Direction. Peterson was the founding pastor of Christ Our King Presbyterian Church in Bel Air, Maryland, where he and his wife, Jan, served for twenty-nine years. Peterson held the title of professor emeritus of spiritual theology at Regent College, British Columbia, from 1998 until his death in 2018.  

Rating: 4.75 stars of 5.

conrade
This book has been provided courtesy of Waterbrook Multnomah and NetGalley without requiring a positive review. All opinions offered above are mine unless otherwise stated or implied.
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I have the utmost respect for Eugene H. Peterson, his knowledge, his faith and his writings. His insightful and easy to relate to writings have helped me many times over the years and I return to them often. I was thrilled when I was approved by the publisher to read an ARC of his newest book On Living Well: Brief Reflections on Wisdom for Walking in the Way of Jesus!

This book is a compilation of his notes to his congregation in their newsletter, as well as bits from his sermons. There are a wide variety of topics with multiple entries in each one. It is a book you can read from cover to cover, or randomly with equal benefit.

I enjoyed the book, but not to the level of his other books. In general, I found myself wishing the entries were longer. Still, it is well worth reading.

The book is scheduled to be published on 11/16/21 by Waterbrook. All opinions in this review are my own and are freely given.
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This book was compiled from N.T. Wrigt's notes after his death. Each chapter is only 2-6 paragraphs long. Some ideas feel very incomplete because they are. Other ideas are densely packed and must be read in bits then put down and pondered. 

This is a good addition for readers already familiar with N.T. Wright. 

I was provided an advance reader's copy through #NetGalley #OnLivingWell
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Living Well is a collection of some of the thoughts from Eugene Petersons  preaches and newsletters  sent to his church. Its a beautiful way to reflect and get encouraged in a poetic way. It's easy to read but packet with love and wisdom. I am not so sure if i agree with all his statements but i like the fact that it leads you and helps you to reflect and meditate in the way we life every day. It will definitely encourage you to live well. 

Thank you to NetGalley and WaterBrook and Multnomah for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.
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On Living Well is a collection of short devotional thoughts by classic preacher, Eugene Peterson, who is probably most famous for his Bible paraphrase, "The Message."  Each selection could be read in about five minutes.  They are short, contain one thought, and are written in a lyrical, poetic way.  It does not include Scripture, just Peterson's thoughts on different aspects of life.

Though I do not agree with all of Peterson's theology, I enjoyed this book.  I like that the selections are short but still give you some meat to chew and consider.  Since these do not contain Scripture, I would not consider them complete devotionals but they are a great add-on to your Bible time.  Perhaps they would better be considered short essays on various topics.

This book covers too many topics to give it a thematic summary.  Instead, I would say just go for this and enjoy.  Realize that it might be a stretch.  There were some sentences that I had to read a couple times.  I do not say this to discourage you but to let you know that it is a deep dive.

I recommend this book!

Thank you to NetGalley and WaterBrook and Multnomah for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.
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This book, by the author of The Message translation of the Bible, is a selection of short writings from a weekly newsletter he used to send out. These vary in length, but are all calm, inspirational, and plainly written and easy to read. The Message is my favorite translation because of its plain language and the way it helps me break out of the repetitive ideas I may be bringing to a scripture, and these writings do the same. 

Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing an advance copy of this book for review.
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This is a series of short 'posts' taken from the weekly newsletter that Peterson sent to his congregation over many years. It made me wonder what it must have been like having Peterson as one's pastor for so many years. What a blessing it would have been.

Some of the posts are one paragraph, a verse or two, and there were a handful that exceeded one page. Like all Peterson's writings there is a gentleness, a calm to his words as he provides an encouragement to 'live well' The posts are loosely grouped into various topics within five parts: "On Beginnings', 'On Simplicity', 'On Prayer and Praises', 'On Mercies' and 'On Glories'.

I found some posts were more relevant than others but I suspect it will be one that I return to again for its simplicity, it's wisdom and grace.

I received an early ebook copy from the publisher via NetGalley with no expectation of a positive review.
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How exciting to have a new compilation of Eugene Peterson's unique voice, style and wisdom. Passages were drawn from his weekly "Amen!" church newsletter, sermons and short, unpublished writings. More wisdom and guidance from encourager pastor Eugene Peterson's own words is most refreshing and continues to bless those who encounter them. 

I agree with Rich Villodas' Forward in the book: "If he wrote it, I read it." In doing so, I learn more about the world, the Creator and myself. 

I received a complimentary copy of the book without obligation. This review is my opinion.
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As he so often did, Peterson finds a way to get right to the core of an idea, the problem behind the apparent dilemma, and redirects readers to see the spiritual insight that is truly important. Excellently written, never over-long, and highly wise.
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