The Art of the Sermon

Last night was my first ever experience of Rob Bell in person preaching/speaking/delivering a message.   I intended to take notes, perhaps even twitter it, but found myself rather just listening, watching, absorbing.

Bell has been a major influence on me for these last 4 or 5 years, so seeing/hearing him in person was a joy.  This guy comes across as passionate and genuine as I feel when I preach.

In fact, honestly, I have adopted some of his style, method, and intonation.  This is apparently not overdone, else I’m sure I would have heard about it from colleagues by now.

This conference is about “reclaiming the art of the sermon.”  For that, I’m all in.  The part of that that I’ve always gotten is the part of the art that springs, sui generis, from the identity of the preacher.  The part I want to develop, and that I expect this conference to help with, is the study, the work development and practice of the art that brings it together over time.

I have already found the inspiration and motivation that going to a conference offers; so, for the next two days, I am eager to find the rest of what is in this for me.

Rohr Roars Like a Lamb

I have committed myself to joy. I have come to realize that those who make space for joy, those who prefer nothing to joy, those who desire the utter reality, will most assuredly have it. We must not be afraid to announce it to refugees, slum dwellers, saddened prisoners, angry prophets. Now and then we must even announce it to ourselves. In this prison of now, in this cynical and sophisticated age, someone must believe in joy. – Richard Rohr

HT sojo

– Richard Rohr, OFM

Google This!

Paul Gravley posted this from YouTube on his blog, Authenticity Matters under the title, “Change.”  The part I want to reference comes about 2 minutes in when the fact that there are 31 Google searches each month is typed into a Google search box.  Following this, we are told that in 2006, this number was 2.7 billion (an almost 1150% increase).

The concluding question asked on this segment of the “Did You Know” video is, “To whom were these questions addressed ebfore Google?”

This point is, I argue, a bit overblown.

How many of us have learned, in the last couple of years, that, instead of asking someone a question, we would rather just type it into Google?

How many of us ahve learned, in the past couple of years, to stop answering other people’s questions, and, in turn, told them to “Google it.”

Perhaps the real question is not “to whom were these questions asked,” but rather, “what is the potential damage done to interpersonal relationships in the name of Google?”

I am not blaming Google.  How has Google, how have various new technologies and services engendered complacency toward keeping up relationships?

Can you Tweet about God?

I joined twitter a couple of months ago. For those of you who aren’t hip on this, twitter is a micro-blogging platform. “Tweets” are limited to 140 characters. You choose to follow people, other people choose to follow you. When you tweet, everyone who follows you receives the message.

I got this idea from Rev. Bosco Peters, who is following me on twitter. He invited people to describe God in 140 characters or less (including spaces). Here is the collection he received.

I’m really interested in how YOU would describe God in 140 characters? Tweet me @steveheyduck, or reply here.