A Godward Life

John Piper’s A Godward Life: Book Two  reads like a blog.

His keen interest in life brings a wide variety of topics to the table: poetry, ethical dilemmas, reflections on his parents, letter to his wife, vignettes of people in his life, meditations on suffering, mental health tips, and commentary on current events. He reaches back to Augustine, Bunyan, and Luther, reflects on David Brainerd, and writes about contemporary heroes like Josef Tson. 

Each reading is close to three pages; this is a book which can be read in small sips or large gulps. 

Piper brings perfect pitch to his writing.  It is not smarmy or cheesy; dry and dusty; or heavy and didactic.  His exuberance for God’s glory brings a patina of grace on each page.  His humility keeps him from self-focus while maintaining a personal and genuine voice.  Above all, John Piper is a pastor. He teaches us how to pray, how to think and how to live.

Life, well lived, is like writing a poem. And therefore it is hard, very hard. A sloppy prose or an unintelligible, free verse life would not be as hard. And the effect would not be as great. God is beautiful, and the life that expresses his glory should be beautiful…Beauty and truth and compelling depth come by painstaking thinking and trial and praying and self-correcting.


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