The Chair and the Desk, 2/24/16

From the chair:

“As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.” 

-1 Timothy 4:5

To become a child of God is to discover great worth and dignity. In the Church, of all places, we should remember that pastors are not above others in either of these regards. However, there is something particular about pastoral ministry. I think it springs from this particular responsibility, which, which faithfulness, can lead to a particular joy. We’ll be reading this whole paragraph to start off our preaching section this morning, and if there’s anything I hope to foster in our 3 hours together, it’s a longing to fulfill this ministry, this gift from God.

From the desk:

“Consistency is the greatest obligation of a philosopher and yet the most rarely found. The ancient Greek schools give us more examples of it than we find in our syncretistic age, in which a certain coalition system of contradictory principles, replete with dishonesty and shallowness, is contrived, because it commends itself better to a public that is satisfied with knowing something of everything and nothing as a whole, so that it can turn its hand to anything.”

-Immanuel Kant, “Critique of Practical Reason” in Practical Philosophy (Cambridge U: 1996), p.158

Our society and educational system too often rewards us for pasting together bits of things we like and name-dropping books we’ve skimmed. Deconstruction is useful, but it is not the end. As teachers, I believe we must aim people toward a whole understanding and whole faith. As students, even if we’re not pushed in this direction, we must seek and grasp for it ourselves.

“The chair” is the one Annie aptly chose for the corner of our living room, and it’s where I am committed to daily hearing from God’s Word–the Word I above all else hope to speak to others. “The desk” is the one by my coffee grounds and spare charger (if I get to the library early enough); it’s where I have the privilege of reading and thinking all day, where I intend to learn for others’ sake.


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