Monday, March 18, 2013

Preaching the mystery

"The pastor, however, can only reveal as much about God as the Scriptures do. There is a part of the Holy One that will always remain a mysterious, untamable whirlwind. This means we pastors should spend more time with who than why. Revealing a mysterious, holy lover is hard work, and for that reason the pastor is always tempted to revert back to being a friend of Job with lots of explanations and arguments. If we can prove why some things happen in the lives of parishioners, the thinking goes, then we can get a leash around God. But whatever it is that we've leashed, it certainly isn't God."

-Craig Barnes, "Three Temptations of the Pastor," 17-18 in Best Advice: Wisdom on Ministry from 30 Leading Pastors and Preachers

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Stanley Hauerwas delivers a sermon entitled "Trust" at Duke Chapel. He's not the most dynamic of speakers, but his words are worth the listen. The sermon, which draws from the book of Esther, contains thought provoking ideas about what it might mean to live faithfully in a world in which God is no longer mentioned.

The sermon begins at the 40:48 mark and concludes at 62:14.