87 Frederick Buechner Quotes from the Famous American Writer

American writer and theologian Frederick Buechner, author of 39 books, has inspired countless readers worldwide with his diverse works spanning fiction, autobiography, essays, sermons and nonfiction, available in 27 languages.

Lauded for highlighting grace in everyday life, he receives acclaim from top publications and fellow acclaimed writers alike, earning nominations for prestigious awards like the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award.

Frederick Buechner

His accolades include the O. Henry Award, Rosenthal Award, Christianity and Literature Belles Lettres Prize and recognition from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, among others.

Here is my top pick of quotes by Frederick Buechner.

Best Frederick Buechner Quotes


If it seems a childish thing to do, do it in remembrance that you are a child. ~ Frederick Buechner.


We find by losing. We hold fast by letting go. We become something new by ceasing to be something old. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Vocation is the place where the world’s greatest need and a person’s greatest joy meet. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Listen to your life. All moments are key moments. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Sometimes the things that do not quite happen in your life count for more than the things that do. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don’t be afraid. ~ Frederick Buechner.


The world says, The more you take, the more you have. Christ says, the more you give, the more you are. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Almost nothing that makes any real difference can be proved. ~ Frederick Buechner.

People are disturbed not by things but by the view they take of them. They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Thus, when you wake up in the morning, called by God to be a self again, if you want to know who you are, watch your feet. Because where your feet take you, that is who you are. ~ Frederick Buechner.

We must be careful with our lives, for Christ’s sake, because it would seem that they are the only lives we are going to have in this puzzling and perilous world, and so they are very precious and what we do with them matters enormously. ~ Frederick Buechner.

The past is the place we view the present from as much as the other way around. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Famous Frederick Buechner Quotes

The life I touch for good or ill will touch another life, and in turn another, until who knows where the trembling stops or in what far place my touch will be felt. ~ Frederick Buechner.

You can kiss your family and friends good-bye and put miles between you, but at the same time you carry them with you in your heart, your mind, your stomach, because you do not just live in a world but a world lives in you. ~ Frederick Buechner.


It is as impossible for man to demonstrate the existence of God as it would be for even Sherlock Holmes to demonstrate the existence of Arthur Conan Doyle. ~ Frederick Buechner.

The pride that keeps us from forgiving is the same pride which keeps us from accepting forgiveness. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Turn around and believe that the good news that we are loved is better than we ever dared hope, and that to believe in that good news, to live out of it and toward it, to be in love with that good news, is of all glad things in this world the gladdest thing of all. Amen, and come Lord Jesus. ~ Frederick Buechner.


To be wise is to be eternally curious. ~ Frederick Buechner.

A miracle is when the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. A miracle is when one plus one equals a thousand. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Our stories are all stories of searching. We search for a good self to be and for good work to do. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Here and there even in our world, and now and then, even in ourselves, we catch glimpses of a New Creation, which, fleeting as those glimpses are apt to be, give us hope both for this life and for whatever life may await us later on. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Whenever you find tears in your eyes, especially unexpected tears, it is well to pay the closest attention. ~ Frederick Buechner.

We learn to praise God not by paying compliments but by paying attention. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Justice is the grammar of things. Mercy is the poetry of things. ~ Frederick Buechner.

God doesn’t reveal his grand design. He reveals Himself. ~ Frederick Buechner.

In other words to live Eternal Life in the full and final sense is to be with God as Christ is with him, and with each other as Christ is with us. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Top Frederick Buechner Quotes

A Christian is one who points at Christ and says, ‘I can’t prove a thing, but there’s something about his eyes and his voice. There’s something about the way he carries his head, his hands, the way he carries his cross-the way he carries me.’~ Frederick Buechner.


Doubts are the ants in the pants of faith. They keep it awake and moving. ~ Frederick Buechner.

We are in constant danger of being not actors in the drama of our lives but reactors, to go where the world takes us, to drift with whatever current happens to be running the strongest. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Laugh till you weep. Weep till there’s nothing left but to laugh at your weeping. In the end it’s all one. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Life is grace. Sleep is forgiveness. The night absolves. Darkness wipes the slate clean, not spotless to be sure, but clean enough for another day’s chalking. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Resurrection means that the worst thing is never the last thing. ~ Frederick Buechner.


The birth of Jesus made possible not just a new way of understanding life but a new way of living it. ~ Frederick Buechner.

What keeps the wild hope of Christmas alive year after year in a world notorious for dashing all hopes is the haunting dream that the child who was born that day may yet be born again even in us. ~ Frederick Buechner.

You can’t be too careful what you tell a child because you never know what he’ll take hold of and spend the rest of his life remembering you by. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Envy is the consuming desire to have everybody else as unsuccessful as you are. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Unbelief is as much of a choice as belief is. What makes it in many ways more appealing is that whereas to believe in something requires some measure of understanding and effort, not to believe doesn’t require much of anything at all. ~ Frederick Buechner.

The place to which God calls you is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Like Adam, we have all lost Paradise; and yet we carry Paradise around inside of us in the form of a longing for, almost a memory of, a blessedness that is no more, or the dream of a blessedness that may someday be again. ~ Frederick Buechner.

It’s less the words they say than those they leave unsaid that split old friends apart. ~ Frederick Buechner.

If preachers decide to preach about hope, let them preach out of what they themselves hope for. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Lust is the craving for salt of a man who is dying of thirst. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Listen to your life. See it for the fathomless mystery it is. In the boredom and pain of it, no less than in the excitement and gladness: touch, taste, smell your way to the holy and hidden heart of it, because in the last analysis all moments are key moments, and life itself is grace. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Pay mind to your own life, your own health, and wholeness. A bleeding heart is of no help to anyone if it bleeds to death. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Popular Frederick Buechner Quotes

Faith is stepping out into the unknown with nothing to guide us but a hand just beyond our grasp. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Even the saddest things can become, once we have made peace with them, a source of wisdom and strength. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Listen. Your life is happening. You are happening. Think back on your journey. The music of your life…~ Frederick Buechner.

The original, shimmering self gets buried so deep that most of us end up hardly living out of it at all. Instead we live out all the other selves, which we are constantly putting on and taking off like coats and hats against the world’s weather. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Coincidences are God’s way of getting our attention. ~ Frederick Buechner.

We have God’s joy in our blood. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Beneath our clothes, our reputations, our pretensions, beneath our religion or lack of it, we are all vulnerable both to the storm without and the storm within. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Where your deep gladness meets with the deep hunger of the world, there you will find a further calling. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Compassion is sometimes the fatal capacity for feeling what it is like to live inside somebody else’s skin. It is the knowledge that there can never really be any peace and joy for me until there is peace and joy finally for you too. ~ Frederick Buechner.

For as long as you remember me, I am never entirely lost. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Life is grace. Sleep is forgiveness. The night absolves. Darkness wipes the slate clean, not spotless to be sure, but clean enough for another day’s chalking. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Go where your best prayers take you. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Wherever people love each other and are true to each other and take risks for each other, God is with them and for them and they are doing God’s will. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Great Frederick Buechner Quotes

If our pain doesn’t destroy us, it just might transform us into truly human beings at last. ~ Frederick Buechner.

If the truth is worth telling, it is worth making a fool of yourself to tell it. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Pay attention to the things that bring a tear to your eye or a lump in your throat because they are signs that the holy is drawing near. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Love yourself not in some egocentric, self-serving sense but love yourself the way you would love your friend in the sense of taking care of yourself, nourishing yourself, trying to understand, comfort, and strengthen yourself. ~ Frederick Buechner.

When you remember me, it means you have carried something of who I am with you, that I have left some mark of who I am on who you are. It means that you can summon me back to your mind even though countless years and miles may stand between us. It means that if we meet again, you will know me. It means that even after I die, you can still see my face and hear my voice and speak to me in your heart. ~ Frederick Buechner.


Faith is not being sure where you’re going, but going anyway. ~ Frederick Buechner.

It is not the objective proof of God’s existence that we want but the experience of God’s presence. That is the miracle we are really after, and that is also, I think, the miracle that we really get. ~ Frederick Buechner.

The grace of God means something like: Here is your life. You might never have been, but you are because the party wouldn’t have been complete without you. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Your vocation in life is where your greatest joy meets the world’s greatest need. ~ Frederick Buechner.

There is no event so common place but that God is present within it, always hidden, always leaving you room to recognize Him or not to recognize Him. ~ Frederick Buechner.

The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Like Buddha under the Bo tree, Jesus, on his tree, has his eyes closed too. The difference is this. The pain and sadness of the world that Buddha’s eyes close out is the pain and sadness of the world that the eyes of Jesus close in. ~ Frederick Buechner.

What’s lost is nothing to what’s found, and all the death that ever was, set next to life, would scarcely fill a cup. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Religion points to that area of human experience wherein one way or another man comes upon mystery as a summons to pilgrimage. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Remember Jesus of Nazareth, staggering on broken feet out of the tomb toward the Resurrection, bearing on his body the proud insignia of the defeat which is victory, the magnificent defeat of the human soul at the hands of God. ~ Frederick Buechner.


The sacred moments, the moments of miracle, are often the everyday moments. ~ Frederick Buechner.

My story is important not because it is mine, God knows, but because if I tell it anything like right, the chances are you will recognize that in many ways it is also yours. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Powerful Frederick Buechner Quotes

One life on this earth is all that we get, whether it is enough or not enough, and the obvious conclusion would seem to be that at the very least we are fools if we do not live it as fully and bravely and beautifully as we can. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Sin and grace, absence and presence, tragedy and comedy, they divide the world between them and where they meet head on, the Gospel happens. ~ Frederick Buechner.

I find I need to put things into words before I can believe that they are entirely real. ~ Frederick Buechner.

Without somehow destroying me in the process, how could God reveal himself in a way that would leave no room for doubt? If there were no room for doubt, there would be no room for me. ~ Frederick Buechner.

I suspect that Jesus spoke many of his parables as a kind of sad and holy joke and that that may be part of why he seemed reluctant to explain them because if you have to explain a joke, you might as well save your breath. ~ Frederick Buechner.

We search to become human in a world that tempts us always to be less than human or looks to us to be more. We search to love and to be loved. ~ Frederick Buechner.

So these were the 87 top Frederick Buechner quotes and sayings on keeping faith and count your blessings.

If you like these quotes and sayings, then you can also read my other posts on Franklin D. Roosevelt quotes and Fred Rogers quotes.

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Chandan Negi
Chandan Negi

I’m the Founder of Internet Pillar - I love sharing quotes and motivational content to inspire and motivate people - #quotes #motivation #internetpillar