A Room Called Remember: Uncollected Pieces by Frederick Buechner

By Frederick Buechner

A Room known as bear in mind brings jointly a few of Buechner's best writings on religion, love, and the ability of phrases within the type of essays, addresses, and sermons. the following Buechner explores autobiography as theology, deals exhilarating reflections on biblical passages, and leads us into the "room referred to as Remember," that "still room inside us all the place the previous lives on as a part of the present,...where with persistence, with readability, with quietness of center, we take into accout consciously to recollect the lives we've lived."

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Sample text

These are the moments that in the depths of whatever our dimness and sadness and lostness are, give us an echo of a wild and bidding voice that calls us from deeper still. It is the same voice that Moses heard and that one way or another says GO! BE! LIVE! LOVE! sending us off on an extraordinary and fateful journey for which there are no sure maps and whose end we will never fully know until we get there. And for as long as the moment lasts, we suspect that maybe it is true—maybe the ground on which we stand really is holy ground because we heard that voice here.

And if, in the process, we decide to tell stories, then, like the preacher as peddler, we may tell stories about ourselves as well as about other people but not, for the most part, our real stories, not stories about what lies beneath all our other problems, which is the problem of being human, the problem of trying to hold fast somehow to Christ when much of the time, both in ourselves and in our world, it is as if Christ had never existed. Because all peddlers of God’s word have that in common, I think: they tell what costs them least to tell and what will gain them most; and to tell the story of who we really are, and of the battle between light and dark, between belief and unbelief, between sin and grace that is waged within us all, costs plenty and may not gain us anything, we’re afraid, but an uneasy silence and a fishy stare.

People came to this church for the same reasons they came to any church anywhere, and my guess is that many of their reasons were just about as inconsequential as many of ours. They came because there wasn’t all that much else to do on Sundays and there was no nine-thousand-page New York Times to drowse over. They came to see their friends and be seen by them. They came out of habit because they had always come, and out of tradition because their ancestors had come before them. They came to be entertained, maybe even to be edified.

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