Leading with the Sermon: Excerpt II

Continuing the series, here’s a second excerpt from Leading with the Sermon: Preaching as Leadership which will be released on February 4 but is available for pre-order now.

In that dialogue between heaven and earth, God has proved remarkably resourceful and imaginative, master of stratagems and devices—the Incarnation, Word Made Flesh, being the most ingenious of all. God refuses to be trapped in heaven or confined to monologue. There is a relentlessness about the speech of this God, an effusive loquaciousness, a dogged determination not to fall silent, nor to cease preaching, until the whole world joins in.

Therein is our hope: the verbal business between us and God is restarted and sustained at every turn by a living, resourceful, long-winded God, thank God.

The church, despite its sins of silence, has never been able to stifle God’s revelation. In every age, including our own—even amid the desolation of mainline Protestant church decline, even when having to work with the poorest of preachers—God has found a way to talk to God’s church. Church talk to and about God ensures that people know the truth about God, that God has a people, and that God’s will be done on earth as in heaven. If God should stop talking, if God should withdraw into apo- phatic, sullen silence, death would have the final say. Yet God’s creative, life-giving, people-forming, intrusive word continues creating, keeps being made flesh, pushes in, and has the last word. “Go, tell!”

pp. 7-8

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