Sunday, June 20, 2021

A turtle on a fence post

From a very good article about the newly elected president of the Southern Baptist Convention:
Have you ever wanted to be a turtle on a fence post?

If you answered “No,” that’s because you didn’t hear Pastor Ed Litton’s sermon at Redemption Church in Saraland, Ala., on June 6.

Pastor Litton was elaborating the third point in his three-point sermon entitled “After God’s Own Heart.” He said that author Alex Haley had a picture of a turtle on a fence post in his office. He said there was an inscription at the bottom of that picture that said, “If you see a turtle on a fence post, you know he didn’t get up there by himself.”

Litton delivered that line in a soft voice and followed it with a pregnant pause. Then, with his finger pointed heavenward, he said, “Oh that God would put you [his finger now pointed at the congregation] on a fence post in this community! That people would look at your life and say, ‘How’s that possible?’” In typical Southern Baptist preaching style, he was winding up to exhort his flock with the Good News in parallel structure:
How’s joy possible in such grief? How’s love possible in a world of hate? How’s satisfaction possible when there’s so many needs? Man, I’m gonna tell you what I’ve learned: When I don’t have enough, He [pointing heavenward again] is enough. When I couldn’t go on, He goes on.
And in that moment, as his voice reaches your ears, and his impassioned hand gestures reach your eyes, even if you aren’t poetically inclined, you want to be a turtle on a fence post. You want what Pastor Litton has — and he wants you to have it. .... (more, very interesting and very much worth reading)
Dominic Pino, "Southern Baptist Convention President Ed Litton Is a Turtle on a Fence Post," National Review.

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