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Monday, December 13, 2004

Advent #3

I don't know why it is, but for most of my life, preachers of my aquaintance have been almost universally unimpressive during Advent season. It's as though, for them, the Incarnation is something to mention in passing at a Christmas Eve service once a year. Sure, some may toss a crumb to the crowd by letting folks light an Advent candle and clumsily read some canned Advent "meditation" but seriously deal with the miracle, the purpose, the power of the Incarnation during the Advent season? Nah. Here's a good example of what all those preachers who "lose" me during Advent could be serving up, instead. Just CLICK the link. I'm going to be reading more of Donald Sensing's sermons, if these be any sort of representative sample. (He does not know what he has achieved: I'm perhaps a wee tad on the hyper-critical side when it comes to crappy preaching. Or even simply sloppy sermonizing... ) Here's another by the same guy. And another. What the heck is this guy thinking?!?!? he's actually taking the Incarnation seriously?!?!? And [shock!!!] he's a Methodist!! [heh] I may just have to move to Franklin, TN for Advent/Christmas next year... [Note: this doesn't mean all the preachers I've known have been poor exegetes—although the majority have been—or that all of them suck swamp gas in their preaching gigs—although, again, a surprising number have indeed—but that darned few preachers of my aquaintance have been sensible in their approach to this miracle we observe during this season. And when i say "we observe" I note that even the secular world observes it, no matter how much the American Criminal License Union and their ilk in the LLMB, the soi-dissant "justice system" and MMPA try to erradicate all Christian references from the season. Why then do so many folks in the pulpit seem to pay so little attention to Advent/Christmas? I dunno. I'd hate to make a blanket statement, but I will note that those in so-called liturgical churches at least make half-hearted stabs at connecting their sermons to the season (which may partly explain Sessing's addresses, though not the excellence they manifest). Anyway, at least I've found some sermons to fill that missing niche this Advent. I hope these links prove useful to others as well. Ed: corrected spelling on Donald Sensing's name 12-19-04