I have just finished reading Robert Godfrey’s spiritual autobiography, An Unexpected Journey: Discovering Reformed Christianity. It was a wonderful, refreshing read. The portrait of vibrant Christianity (in the church where he came to faith, and elsewhere) which he describes is so compelling. As a Baptist I have places of difference with Godfrey, but this book was good for my soul and I commend it to you. He discusses the importance of a vibrant community and the danger of turning our churches into “debating societies” where truth is discussed but less concern is given to caring for one another. He describes his own struggle with resting in the sincerity of his faith rather than just trusting the faithfulness of Christ (as noted previously). There is much pastoral wisdom to be found here.
Interestingly he structures most of the book around the Psalms. At the end of the book he discusses how valuable the Psalms have been to him. As anyone who has been reading this blog will know, I have been increasingly impressed with how central the Psalms were for the life and faith of our forebears coming out of the Reformation. When I see the strength of the trees which grew out of this soil, it makes me want to use the same fertilizer.
Interestingly, while Godfrey discusses the Psalms throughout, the chapter where he focuses on them is titled, “Passion.” There, in the closing words of the book, he writes of the Psalms:
“They have focused and united for me the theology, the worship, the piety, and the church life taught in the Scriptures. They have united for me head, heart, and mouth in the praise of the Lord. They are the soul of the Reformed faith.” (150)