Heavy lifting

Reading theology
A few years ago one of my adult children picked up a book of theology I was reading, leafed through a few pages, then asked, “Dad, why are you still reading this stuff?” Good question. There are many reasons why I read this stuff: Because I need to read in order to preach. Because, as Anselm put it, faith seeks understanding, and I don’t understand it all yet. Because I’m engaged in a vocation that Walter Brueggemann described recently as “the complex web of activities that we may call biblical scholarship, or academic research, or ministry of proclamation, or the reflective Christian life.” Because I remember theologian Joe Sittler being disappointed when he visited the study of a former student and noted that the books of theology on the shelf were untouched while the pastor’s desk was piled high with plumbers’ bills and floor-tile catalogs. And because I love to read.


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