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  • Writer's pictureDr. Roger D Duke

Why We Need Pilgrim's Progress Today: An Interview with Dr. Roger D. Duke-Part the Third

Part the Third

Please visit Stage and Story @ or where this interview was originally posted.

What advice can you offer to modern Pilgrims?

Advice? I would encourage the modern Pilgrim to slow down: to read the Scripture more, to pray more, to meditate on the Scripture more, to put themselves under the ministry of a good Bible-believing church, to fellowship with God’s people more, to avail themselves of the means of grace, and to seek those things which are above. All of these issues are steps and stages of growth for Jesus’ followers. But, the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. The 10,000-hour rule of expertise began with forming particular habit(s) of discipline.

Why do you think we keep ourselves so busy, Christians and non-Christians, alike?

Frankly, this may be the easiest answer I can give. There is supposed to be a diametric difference between the world and the Followers of Christ who make up the Church--His Body on earth. The “world, the flesh, and the devil” has such a sway--such a control--on all of us that we are swept away; with the latest fad, with the latest pop-culture icon, with the latest whatever! This will sound way narrow and probably is by today’s standard; but we all are worshiping someone or something. If you don’t think so, just take away, or even threaten to take away someone’s iPhone. See them immediately get defensive and go into withdrawal like an alcoholic or drug addict. But that is an entirely different issue to be discussed at another interview.

How do you find ways to slow down and meditate on what motivates you?

Since you have asked me a personal question, forgive me for waxing personal. About twenty years ago now I decided to make good on a personal commitment to pray for one hour a day. Any disciplined person knows that one does not just start doing an hour of anything a day unless or until there is a level of commitment to do such. So I went back to the fundamentals of the Christian Faith. I started reading my Bible, meditating, reading devotional literature, et al. Probably the main thing that spurred me along was my prayer journaling. It started off slow but has gained in momentum and time ever since. The habit is done 7 days a week nearly without fail. The journaling is usually done for 5 of the 7 days. The process has developed into a personal liturgy that I cannot do without. It is like breathing to me. I must do it in order to have the spiritual strength to get through the day.

But I would submit two warnings for anyone who may want to follow this path. Sometimes I do it only out of rote. And I do not do it out of worship. And other times I do it thinking I am adding to my righteous standing before God. But that is not possible when one considers the grace that comes to the sinner when he repents toward God and places their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

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