We must first smite and slay the extempore bias. From at least the time of Rousseau, we have been taught that that which is spontaneous is that which is honest, fresh, sincere, and untrammeled. On the other end, we have been taught that that which is prepared beforehand is stiff and insincere.I don't remember now where I found the link to Mr. Wilson's article, but thank you, kind blogger, just the same.
But like many very effective lies, there is an important truth here. You do want it to be fresh. But that is why you have to prepare to be fresh. You will get what you prepare to get. Freshness is no accident. When preparation results in stale messages, that is because you didn't seal the bag right. You want fresh, then prepare for fresh. This is the discipline of a pianist practicing scales so that she can sit down and play a glorious piece "spontaneously."
Thursday, October 21, 2010
At Blog and Mablog Douglas Wilson offers some good, practical advice on spontaneity and sermon preparation. Here's the article's opening: