“How to be a sinner” isn’t advice on how to sin better. It’s a series of compassionate reflections on what it actually means to identify myself as a sinner, and to do so in a healthy way. Because how I identify myself is important, and the “sinner identity” can potentially be a problem: Is “wrong” at the core of my very being? What does it do to me, to be seen constantly as falling short? Isn’t there a good kind of self-love and self-care?
The claim of so much scripture and prayer is amazing: owning the “sinner identity” is a key component of a healthy life; it’s part of self-care; it’s part of my salvation. “How to be a sinner” aims to steer towards a healthy self-regard, and towards surrender to the endless love and mercy of God, who saves us precisely through and within our brokenness. “There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”
About me: I’ve been teaching theology, spirituality, and the arts for more than twenty years.
With my wife Patricia we have two flourishing children in their twenties.
A life-long musician, I’m a jazz bassist and I play out at least once a week. I conduct my parish choir.
I’ve been trying to work out this “sinner” thing, reflecting, writing, and speaking about it for several years now. Every time I’ve given a retreat on this theme, the reaction is uncommonly powerful. So I wrote the book, and by now I’ve given dozens of talks and retreats around the world. Crazy world.
See my personal website at peterbouteneff.com.