January 15, 2021

Riffing On Me: Jared Wilson’s “The Hard Stuff of Real Lives.”

compguy.jpegI don’t usually link people who riff on my work, but I have tremendous respect for Jared at Gospel Driven Church, and his use of one of my better pieces “To Know We’re Not Alone,” is a real honor. Take a moment and read “The Hard Stuff of Real Lives.”

I want you to read Jared and consider what he’s saying and what we are saying together. There’s a real battle going on here, and it’s not a battle about calling people out and making fun of your adversaries. It’s about whether you can sit in front of a real person and HEAR THEIR LIFE SPEAKING TO YOU.

BHT fellow John ran a post at Confessing Evangelical a few days ago that contained this quote from Jacque Ellul. The application of the quote is to marriage (and it’s a powerful application), but it is about much more. It’s about that moment when we listen to another person and don’t enter immediately into judgement. It’s about loving God, loving truth, loving persons and the order in which all those occur in the MOMENTS life is lived. Hearing and speaking the truth in love is a powerful calling.

A basic rule in life and speech is forgetfulness of self. In dialogue we have to bear in mind that the one is made for the other. Thus I have to efface myself. I have to listen without reacting at once or wanting to impose myself. The important law in dialogue is not to try to be right over against the other, and therefore, even if we are convinced that what we know or think is right, to be silent and to accept all that the other says.

To accept being wrong in a dialogue, to do so against our own convictions, is not at all easy. But it is necessary if the dialogue that is to promote the unity of a couple in its otherness is not to become instead a sterile discussion. We have to invert a common formula and say that we love truth, but we love our spouse even more.

In this way love will grow as the truths that we surrender at once show themselves to be fertile. When we think some months or years later of the bitter discussions that we have perhaps had together, we see at once how useless and futile they were. But when we recognize otherness in dialogue, a new epoch in the growth of love begins.

Thanks Jared for a great post on an excellent blog. I’m honored.


  1. No, Michael, thank you. Just glad to be on the field with you.

  2. Jason S. Kong says

    This is excellent. Both his and yours.

  3. Excellent quote! Thanks. We forget or neglect such stuff.

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