Another excellent article in the September 18, 2007 issue of the CHRISTIAN CENTURY is Anthony B. Robinson’s article “Courage to preach”. Robinson discusses two recent books on preaching, The Fully Alive Preacher by Mike Graves and Preaching as Testimony by Anna Carter Florence. Robinson’s discussion did make me write down the names of both books as possible Christmas gift ideas.
However, the main reason I found this article so interesting was because Robinson raised some important questions about what preaching is really about.
The focus of preaching is properly on who God is, what God has done, what God is doing. It is the good news about a God whose thoughts are not our thoughts, whose ways are not our ways. It is the story of God’s relentless love, scandalous grace and persistent purposes. We, preachers and congregations, come second.
Another interesting quotation:
Will Willimon points to something similar when he observes that good preachers love God more than they love their congregations.
Robinson’s article has really made me think, and it has made me ask myself if my preaching has lately been focused on God and how God is at work, or whether I have made myself or the congregation the subject.
If you read Robinson’s article, I would be interested in hearing your reaction to it. What is the most basic thing that a preacher should be trying to do in the act of preaching?