Craft of Preaching

Dear Working Preacher

Insights, ideas and inspiration related to the coming week's lectionary texts.

Community and Connections

Dear Working Preachers,

I am actually preaching this week. How about that? On this week’s text from Matthew this coming Friday in the Luther Seminary

A “Cross and Follow” Kind of Life

Dear Working Preachers,

I have to be honest. I have never cared much for this passage, particularly 16:24, “take up your cross and follow me.”

A “Come to Jesus” Moment

Dear Working Preachers,

“Who do you say that the Son of Man is?”

If this question doesn’t strike the fear of God in you, well, I am

"Getting" Great Faith

Dear Working Preachers,

Little faith or great faith? How do we tell the difference? What are the criteria? Who gets to decide? I ask these questions this

When We Can't Walk on Water

Those of you who listen regularly to Sermon Brainwave, our weekly podcast text study that I co-host with my colleagues at Luther Seminary, Rolf Jacobson

When a Miracle is More Than a Miracle

Dear Working Preachers,

Think about it. How many of Jesus’ miracles are recorded in all four Gospels? Let’s count. It shouldn’t take

Inviting a Kingdom Imagination

Anyone out there tired of parables yet?

To be honest, Matthew’s plethora of parables is perhaps my biggest problem when it comes to the first Gospel.

Wheat and Tares and Other Truths about the Kingdom of Heaven

Dear Working Preachers,

Good and evil side by side, co-existing without set checks and balances, without resolute criteria for adjudicating which is which,

Birds, Thorns, and Other Surprising Responses to God’s Word

Dear Working Preachers,

The “Word of God” is an elusive and complicated topic, isn’t it? What comes to mind for people in the pews when

On Hard Yokes and Heavy Burdens

Dear Working Preachers,

I remember well the first time I preached on Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30. I was on my internship at First Evangelical Lutheran Church

No Small Gestures

Dear Working Preacher,

What do you make of this week’s Gospel passage? I have to say that on my first read, I came up rather empty. With last week’s

Living Beyond Fear

Dear Working Preacher,

I’m writing this letter just after watching the U.S. World Cup match against Ghana and in this context remembered something

Trinitarian Congregations

Dear Working Preacher,

I don’t know about you, but I often find myself dreading Trinity Sunday a bit. Okay, sometime more than a bit. We all know

Pentecost Dreams

Dear Working Preacher,

Pentecost is the time to dream.

Come to think of it, maybe every season in the church is a time to dream. After all, we worship

Jesus' Prayer and Ours

Dear Working Preacher,

It’s time to talk about prayer. Not so much between you and me. I’m relatively confident you know what you’re