The setting was a campfire on a summer night at church camp. A young lady who had not spoken a single word all week stood up and haltingly proclaimed, "I love Jesus." That was twenty years ago, but I still remember it as the moment I realized that this child (and many others like her), so loved by God, would never be able to join us at the table to celebrate our Lord's Supper. Because of her mental impairments, she would not be able to meet our expectations for those who could make profession of faith and be welcomed to the table.
Articles by this author:
Hughes Oliphant Old. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1995, 370 pp. $19.95. Reviewed by Timothy Mulder, pastor of Preakness Reformed Church, Preakness, New Jersey.
Hughes Oliphant Old has written a practical guide to help ministers teach their congregations the language of prayer. In a warm introduction, he tells family stories of how a life of prayer develops.
I love to preach, but as I thought back over the lenten seasons of the last decade or so, I found it isn't the sermons of Lent that stand out in my memory. It's the liturgy as a whole. So much of our Reformed tradition revolves around the sermon, but Lent is beyond words. Lent and Easter are about actions. So my advice to pastors as they prepare for this season is, "Preach less in Lent."