Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Preaching in The Zone

Chris Erdman at Odyssey writes about preachers "inhabiting the text," a condition similar to what some call The Zone:
What I’m talking about I can only speak of in mystical terms. There is a zone, a spiritual state that can occur in preaching . . .

. . . that is similar to the experience testified to by warriors, who in the midst of battle, are caught up in the battle spirit and time stands still and they enter into a new state of being entirely. Alternatively, it is like the experience of a cellist who finds herself suddenly in a moment in which she has transcended all her technique and training, and is one with the music, in harmony with that divine song that holds the universe together. She is no longer speaking instructions to herself and playing a score, rather she is being played.

I don’t know that what I am describing is an ecstatic experience so much as it is mystical. It is not irrational; the mind is still alert—even uncommonly alert. In preaching moments like this I am uncharacteristic calm, fully present to the moment, reverent to something greater than myself, astonishingly open, free.
Can anyone relate? More importantly: Is what Chris describes merely a personal experience, or are those who hear more powerfully touched by the Word?


Blogger Debra said...

Hi Milton...To me, it's a matter of being under the anointing of the Holy Spirit. And although it *is* mystical, at the same time, I believe it's meant to be a more common occurence in our daily lives as we walk in obedience and our callings in life. Even to a point where it becomes, truly, the very spirit of God moving in and through us. And when that truly takes place, all people involved are blessed and touched in some way. It is the anointing which sets the captives free and there's nothing else quite like walking in that anointing. I believe it's available to all Christians who are willing to be used by God, come what may. Anyway, that's what that post brought to my mind. :) God bless... Debra

9:27 AM, July 27, 2005  
Blogger Keith Brenton said...

I know there's another kind of "zone," one that I was blessed to witness recently, in a moment when my minister was as much "us" as he was himself ... I'll never forget it.

One Transforming Moment of Grace

3:59 PM, July 27, 2005  
Blogger Milton Stanley said...

Thanks, Debra. This topic is something I'm not very knowledgable about, and I appreciate your ideas. Peace.

10:10 AM, July 28, 2005  
Blogger Milton Stanley said...

Thanks for the link, Keith. I'll give it a read. Peace.

10:11 AM, July 28, 2005  

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