When I was undergrad I always tried to get my schedule to work out so that I would only have class on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I remember why I loved it. Today is the first day of the new semester and I get to stay in my pajamas at home. I don’t have class until tomorrow, so I am taking advantage of my last day of vacation by walking the dogs, running, reading, writing, and basically sitting around.
This semester is even better because I only have one actual classroom class on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 330-445. The rest of my classes are independent studies or just sitting in on other classes. The bulk of my work this semester is in the form of studying for comps. I need to have my book list finished as soon as possible so I can spend the rest of the semester and the summer studying.
And, I am spending the day today waiting. Tomorrow I am going to see one of my best friends from seminary. He has lived in Texas since we graduated, pastoring a Church of God. I am pretty excited about seeing him because we were such good friends and I have missed him more than I thought I had.
The last time I saw Feirtag was at graduation and then it was all awkward and we just wanted to get the hell out of there. I won’t ever forget how we helped each other through so much during those three years. He wasn’t the only one. But if I had to pick three people who helped me the most during those times he would be one of the three.
You know how sometimes you see someone every day and you take them for granted. Then when you don’t see them, you really don’t miss them because you took them for granted. This is how I feel about most of my friends from seminary. It is not how I feel about the actual experience of seminary. For the most part, that experience was strange, alienating, and spiritually trying. But I think if I called any one of them up today, we could take up like old times.
I guess I will see tomorrow. Today I will wait.
On another note, yesterday’s sermon was good. I mean really good. I told Bec on the way home that I could stand to trade Sundays—Matt then David—which is a huge compliment to both men.
I think I am a pretty hard parishioner to please when it comes to the sermon. I don’t deal well with gimmicky three point sermons, and I don’t want to be entertained. I want to hear the word, and to hear it wrestled with and rolled around until its meaning is fully extracted.
Preachers get extra points if they include a point that I hadn’t already considered when I read the text. Not that I think I am so smart, but if I thought of every point made in the sermon in the five minutes I had before church to consider the text, then someone (read this to be the preacher) is getting paid for doing what I could do in five minutes.
Yes, I am a little hard on ministers. After all, they are the voice of the Church and that voice should be new every morning like God’s compassion. The voice of the Church shouldn’t bring the same stale message—the voice should cry out in the wilderness bringing a new revolutionary message. As Matt said, it is then our job to go out and meet the revolution and to be transformed by its mystery and grace.
On yet another note, last Sunday Dave spoke about our goal for our church for the year: peace and grace. I think those two words are worthy of body art. Our entire mission as Christians should always be peace and grace, should it not?
This is for you David: