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Publisher's Summary

"Sixty years ago I found myself distracted," Eugene Peterson writes. "A chasm had developed between the way I was preaching from the pulpit and my deepest convictions on what it meant to be a pastor."
And so began Peterson's journey to live and teach a life of congruence - congruence between preaching and living, between what we do and the way we do it, between what is written in scripture and how we live out that truth.
Nothing captures the biblical foundation for this journey better than Peterson's teachings over his 29 years as a pastor. As Kingfishers Catch Fire offers a never-before-published collection of these teachings to anyone longing for a richer, truer spirituality.
Peterson's strikingly beautiful prose and deeply grounded insights usher us into a new understanding of how to live out the good news of the word made flesh.
This is one man's compelling quest to discover not only how to be a pastor but how to be a human being.
©2017 Eugene H. Peterson (P)2017 Random House Audio
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Critic Reviews

"As Kingfishers Catch Fire covers it all, the A to Z of Christian spirituality. It is filled with the kind of wisdom that can only come from long obedience in the same direction! It's more than a book; it's a gift. Thank you, Eugene!" (Mark Batterson, New York Times best-selling author of The Circle Maker and lead pastor of National Community Church, Washington, DC)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Adam Shields on 06-09-17

A collection of 49 sermons

Scripture is always the central focus on Eugene Peterson’s writing. Practice Resurrection may be about the church and spiritual development, but it is about how the book of Ephesians talks about the church and spiritual development. Run with the Horses may be about excellence, but it is framed by looking at excellence through Jeremiah the prophet. The Contemplative Pastor may be about spiritual direction and the role of the pastor, but it is largely through the lens of the beatitudes and other scripture that he looks at the pastor’s role.

As Kingfishers Catch Fire is Peterson’s book on preaching. It isn’t that lay people won’t get something out of this, I certainly do not actively preach, but I think it was written for pastors. Non-pastors probably will read this more as a devotional book. But pastors should read this as a master class in how our preaching is to be about scripture first and most of all and how scripture points to God.

The seven sections, each with seven sermons, are all looking at how a particular biblical author communicates God to us through scripture. The sections are labeled, ‘Preaching in the company of Moses, or David, or Isaiah, or Solomon, or Peter, or Paul, or John of Patmos. If you have read some of his other books you can seem a few of the drafts of ideas that were worked out in his books that started in his sermons. And based on the illustrations and content of the sermons, these stretched widely throughout his preaching career, from early days with young children to the 50th anniversary of the church that he started.

One of Peterson’s books that I enjoyed browsing is his Take and Read, an annotated list of books that he has found helpful. Peterson’s wide ranging interests and his ability to reference popular and academic books, theology and fiction, poetry and prose is an example of how ideas and stories have seeped deeply into his life. He isn’t referencing the latest movie to show how cool he can be, although there were a few movies referenced, but the references were illustrations that made the point deeply in ways that were expanding, but also accessible to a congregation that is a normal congregation.

As Kingfishers Catch Fire is a book that I want to read again slowly. I listened to it on audiobook, which was good and well narrated. But I look forward to a second reading in print a few months from now so I can absorb again deeply crafted sermons that illustrate so well how scripture points to God.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful


By Insideoverneath on 08-24-17

Peterson's Best.

This was by far his best work yet... A collection of sermons from a man who has walked with God for a long time and unpacking the whole counsel of God through 7 different lenses. I loved it.

This work is one I will return to time and time again whenever I feel like my life is getting out of congruence.

May we all share a life obeying in the same direction.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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