…when you’re preaching, what do you do when you come to a passage of Scripture and you are unsure about what it means? Let’s be honest—this happens quite often. You are preaching through a book of the Bible, and you come to a place where the commentaries do not agree, there seem to be multiple legitimate options concerning its interpretation, and you are left scratching your head. You don’t want to be dishonest and just choose an option. And you don’t want to deliver a drawn-out sermon on what different denominations teach.
Interesting conversation between John Starke, Greg Thornbury and Collin Hansen:
I was thinking recently how much of a picture that is to my parenting adult children. When my son was lying there coughing, I couldn’t stop it. All I could do was wait to see if I was needed. That is a lot like parenting an older teen and young adult. We have to do a lot of waiting and listening.
When my children were little, it seemed so much more straightforward. I prayed for wisdom to know what to say; now, I pray for wisdom to know when to be quiet. That is one of the hardest things I have learned as my kids have grown up: knowing when to be quiet. It can be quite crucial. The wrong word can make a mess of things, and a word not offered can do the same thing.
I wonder if others observe a phenomenon I think I see in many churches: people clustering with others in their generation? The 20-somethings spend their time with other 20-somethings talking about 20-something concerns. The young families hang out with other young families, hosting play dates and trading parenting tips. It seems to me that 60-somethings tend to flock together with other 60-somethings. There are notable exceptions, of course. There are those older men and women who become pillars in the church by investing in younger men and women. And there are the younger persons who seek to serve young families or older members. But by and large, people seem to spend the bulk of their spiritual energy and time with other people in the same stage of life.