It's been a busy day, and now I am bunking the evening service after morning worship and two lots of visiting. All of it has been good, but I am tired, and need to rest (yes, I am FINALLY learning :-) )
After some serious wrangling, this morning's sermon came together pretty well, and seemed to engage people - just as well as it ended up being a tad on the long side. A sermon - or more properly reflection - on reading the Bible, on the place for diversity of interpretation and difference of opinion, on the inherently partial and contextual nature of Bible reading, a bit of a plea for more group Bible study and some cheeky references to assorted bits of popular theology.
I chose the hymns carefully, with one exception coming from dissenting traditions, and expressing ideas that seem important. So we had Caryl Micklem's "Give to me, Lord, a thankful heart", Bonhoeffer's "By Gracious Powers", George Rawson's "We Limit not the truth of God", Doddridge's "great God we sing your guiding hand" and Sydney Carter's "One more step"... but not in that order!
All in all, it seems to have been a good day. And, just in case anyone is daft enough to read it, here is the first bit of the sermon, before it morphed into pure prose...