For Christ plays in ten thousand places,
Lovely in limbs, and lovely in eyes not his
To the Father through the features of men’s faces.
-Gerard Manley Hopkins
“The central verb, ‘play,’ catches the exuberance and freedom that mark life when it is lived beyond necessity, beyond mere survival. ‘Play’ also suggests words and sounds and actions that are ‘played’ for another, intentional and meaningful renderings of beauty or truth or goodness. Hopkins incorporates this sense of play with God as the ultimate ‘other’ (‘…to the Father’)—which is to say that all of life is, or can be, worship.
“Hopkins’s sonnet is as good a presentation of what we are after in understanding life, the ‘end’ of life, as we are likely to find: The vigor and spontaneity, the God-revealing Christ getting us and everything around us in on it, the playful freedom and exuberance, the total rendering of our lives as play, as worship before God.”
-from the introduction of Christ Plays In Ten Thousand Places by Eugene Peterson
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