Adam Hamilton is the lead pastor at Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas.
Hamilton suggests that we use the December time frame to advertise a January sermon series that specifically is designed to speak to the unchurched who show up at Christmas Eve and intentionally invite them back. Advertise it all of December, but in particular, on Christmas Eve night.
The idea is evangelism.
Here are some ideas …
- Reading the Bible for all the Wrong Reasons. Would be based on a book by Russell Pregeant. Chapter titles map the route: “Neither Fact Book nor Catechism,” “Neither Science nor Anti-Science,” “Neither Crystal Ball Nor Horror Show,” “Neither Rigid Rules Nor Billy Club.” My guess is I would take four or so of those chapter titles and use them as grist for a sermon for that week.
- Good and Bad Ways to Think about Religion and Politics. Too soon? Might spend a few weeks getting to it but I expect it would end up roughly here from a review in First Things: “Benne proposes an alternative to separationism .... critical engagement. He derives from the central claims of Christianity about the nature of God, creation, salvation, and man several politically relevant principles and explains how those principles may be applied given the historical, political, national, and social situations in which an ecclesial [church] community may find itself.”
Hamilton himself has offered the following ideas. I think they are “good” … would put a Hilltop/Shaw/Utah (as appropriate) slant to them. Here are some he has “done” and the link is provided if you want to hear a few. My guess is you can get the idea of where he went from the title. Again, I would not preach HIS sermon … but … it would be part of the material I would use to prepare.
- Love, Sex, & Marriage (cor.org- 2012 down at the bottom, I would do only four of them, not all 7, and even then, modify a lot)
- Conversations with an Atheist (cor.org-- 2007 down at the bottom … like with LS&M, would look at and pick 4 ideas, modify)
- Where Science and Religion Meet (cor.org-- 2005 down at the bottom … like LS&M, and CWaA …. )
- When Christians Get it Wrong (cor.org- – 2009 down at the bottom … like …)
- Dave Ramsey also offers some ideas. Life. Money. Hope (lifechurch.tv w/Dave Ramsey is a reference but I am sure it is the Dave Ramsey 101 kind of stuff). Hamilton also has some $$ oriented thoughts that have a Ramsey flavor to them.
One I think is also “good” or relevant is a series on Boundaries by Cloud and Townsend.
Think – ‘if I were curious about what “the church” might have to say about my life and the life of my family, do any of these “excite” you?
Do you have any other ideas that can be unpacked for four weeks (like we did last year with forgiveness)?
Give me your thoughts please by next Wednesday or so. I need to start getting some thoughts down so we can plan musically as well as other worship elements.
Posts in comments please your most intriguing/possibly interesting, your 2nd most interesting/intriguing and your 3rd most. I will “score them 5/3/1. Here are the eight I mentioned.
1. Reading the Bible for all the Wrong Reasons.
2. Good and Bad Ways to Think about Religion and Politics.
3. Love, Sex, & Marriage
4. Conversations with an Atheist
5. Where Science and Religion Meet
6. When Christians Get it Wrong
7. Life. Money. Hope
February will be a look at black music and the theology/ideas contained w/in them.
March is transfiguration Sunday and then we start our Lenten journey. Easter is late this year. That will mean Pentecost will alsos be later than usual.
Might come back to this fishing idea post Easter … if you have an idea or three for that, let me know.