The Preacher’s Problem!

Word Words

I read this morning the opening chapter of a book with the intriguing title “I Spend Therefore I Am”.  The writer’s thesis is that economic theory has permeated every aspect of our lives. He instances, for example, the on-line dating sites where questionnaires and rankings lay out people like goods on a market stall. He maintains that economics now determines our political and personal decisions. The Enlightenment’s “I think therefore I am” has become “I spend therefore I am”.

After reading this I turned to my dear friend Frederich Buechener and his daily readings entitled “Listening to your Life”. The gist of what he had to say was that words cannot say all there is to be said about life. It led me to ponder how centred my life is upon words. I reflected on a recent week in Bali prior to a preaching responsibility on the Sunday where the concentration upon words affected the Bali activities and vice versa. The resulting sermon left a lot to be desired. This was disturbing enough but what really disturbed me was the realization that  “words cannot say all that there is to be said about life”, and that for me life was in effect a matter of “I speak therefore I am”.

This morning I contemplated the word made flesh and his assertion  “I love therefore I am”, and tears welled up in the Preacher’s eyes as he recognized the dominance of words in his life and how little time he has left to deal with “The Preacher’s Problem”.



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