Monday, March 11, 2013

Sermon in the Park

We had the most lovely Sunday afternoon. It was sunny and warm and there was a crisp breeze to keep us cool. We were after fresh air and soul food, so this is what we did. We drove to a beautiful local park and walked a big loop around the trees and the little duck pond, and had fun stretching our legs and chatting and looking at the cute puppies and children that passed by.

After our walk we found a picnic table in the shade, I whipped out my iPhone and we listened to one of Tim Keller's free sermons. I've heard Tim Keller preach twice at his home church in New York and each time, I left feeling renewed and rejuvenated in my faith in a unique way. He has a gift for making the Bible come alive, making it make sense for all of us in our daily lives as modern Christians. He's inspired, and inspiring.

We sat side by side and listened to this sermon on the jealousy of God while the breeze whistled above us through the trees and the sun glimmered on the grass nearby. We learned that God's jealousy is not like most human jealousy, that God's jealousy is angered love that always stays love and doesn't turn evil. We learned that God's jealousy is about His desire to have a love relationship with us, to have all of our hearts and all of our souls. We learned that we have a jealous God who wants to be our first priority, who wants our fidelity and our intimacy, all because of love.

On the way home I mentioned to my husband that listening to a powerful sermon in the middle of nature was like being in God's church. Absorbing His Word and feeding our spirits in the midst of the beautiful natural world He's given us felt at once magical and fitting. I couldn't have asked for a more perfect Sunday afternoon.





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10 comments:

  1. Katie @ Loverly SheMarch 11, 2013 at 10:58 AM

    I bought Josh Tim Keller's "Generous Justice" for Christmas and he loved it. My dad is a pastor and theologian and he really likes Keller as well (which says something, because he's pretty picky! lol)

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  2. Beautiful. I shared my copy of your book with my Mom and she is just loving it!! I think I need to go order a 2nd copy so she can keep it.

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  3. That's so neat that your dad is a pastor! I'd love to read some of Tim Keller's books--I have a feeling they're all wonderful.

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  4. I'm so glad, Christine! By the way, if you'd be interested in any signed copies just let me know, I'd be more than glad to do that for you :)

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  5. What a beautiful image! It sounds like you two had a lovely and meaningful afternoon. :)

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  6. Sounds like an absolutely delightful Sunday! I read Counterfeit Gods (by Tim Keller) with my high school small group girls and we all loved it. His writing and teaching is incredible... it completely transformed my view on the false idols in my life. Thanks for sharing the links to his sermons, I will have to check them out!

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  7. This is a beautiful post. I often think about the fact that almost all of Jesus's preaching was done outdoors---on hillsides, on seashores, in groves, even from boats floating in the afternoon light. I bet there were many powerful afternoons for His listeners where the works and the words of God all swirled together in intoxicating ways. I think nature is a very natural venue for reflecting on our spiritual life, the maker of our incredible world, and our place within it. Too bad more organized worship doesn't take place outdoors. Maybe that's part of the power of summer camps and wilderness experiences, when we get more chances to visit with God in his natural outdoor "cathedrals."

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  8. He mentioned false idols in this sermon and I agree with you, it changed my view too.

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  9. You said it better than I did! :)

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