Archive | May 8, 2014

100 days – Day 16

 100 days – Day 16     Storyteller


When I was a healthcare chaplain, my preaching style changed dramatically!  from the time that I was ordained in 1974 (40 years next month!) until 1999 when I took up my post with NHS Dumfries and Galloway, my sermons would start with a Biblical text and then, after an introduction, would have three points, then a conclusion.

Incidentally, a visiting minister who came to preach one Sunday at the particular Church where I ministered several years ago, asked – during the children’s story – “Does Mr Strachan have three points?” Blank.  Then a small voice, “No but Hearts got three points from yesterday’s football game!

Anyhow, my approach has changed.  At the brief services for patients on a Sunday, I would tell an anecdote or use an illustration – a story, in fact – before ending by tying it into that morning’s Scripture.  Now that I’m preaching full sermons again, there is now an expanded use of this method.

I mention this, because someone said to me yesterday evening, “you’re a good storyteller” in reference to a recent sermon.





In the 1970s and into the eighties, I always enjoyed reading Frank Boreham’s sermons and essays.  He was a gifted storyteller.  And, again, yesterday evening, I came across this quote by him.  Here he is, talking about God:

He always speaks the universal language, the language of gesture and symbol and sign. He speaks to the universal heart by means of the Ark, the Scapegoat, the Passover, the Mercy Seat, the Serpent in the Wilderness, the Cities of Refuge. Such signs need no translation; they speak to people of every clime and time. In the New Testament the same principle holds true.

He talked of lilies, vines, and corn,
The sparrow and the raven,
And tales so natural, yet so wise,
Were on men’s hearts engraven.
And yeast and bread and flax and cloth,
And eggs and fish and candles;
See, how the familiar world
He most divinely handles.

When God has something really vital to say to people, God says it in a language that requires no translation or interpretation. God says it in a way that all people can comprehend. ‘The veil of the temple was torn in two from the top to the bottom.’ All people everywhere can see the awful and profound significance of such a signal. A person may be unable to grasp the doctrine of the Atonement; but where is the heart that does not respond to the Vision of the Cross?”

F.W Boreham


Isn’t that beautifully expressed?  Unlike the pupil, who, commentating on a particular School Chaplain’s storytelling approach to Religious Instruction, said, “I like Mr X’s stories.  He’s got no morals!”

The Blog of David Robertson

More Enigma Than Dogma

Relationships, Culture & Current Events

Curriculum of the Spiritual Life

Poems, Prayers, & Proverbs that speak to what it means to be a "living curriculum" of the Christian Life.

Iain Macwhirter

Read Iain in The Herald and Sunday Herald, every Wednesday and Sunday.

Sky Pilot

ramblings of a reformed ecclesiastic


personal reflections on life, the universe & everything

The Immortal Jukebox

A Blog about Music and Popular Culture

100 DAYS

various positions


This site is the bee's knees


Faith Seeking Understanding


A dangerous Mixture politics and religion

In an Irish Home

What Life is Really Like Behind the Hall Door

waverley710, The Ramblings of a Wannabe theologian.

This site is the bee's knees

Cristian Mihai

writes a short story every week

Jim Palmer

Inner Anarchist

Love's Work

Reflections on living into ministry

It Is What It Is

Dr. Rex .... Blogging for change.


Just another site

You Got to be Kidding's Blog

Humor and musings from all around the Internet

David's Commonplace Book

Random stuff that interests me


"Haud Gaan!" - Scots for 'Keep Pressing Forward!'

Soul Destruction

London call girl book & diary series - exposing the dark world and harsh reality of life as a drug addicted call girl


entertainment without boundaries

Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander

Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam

Thoughts Of A Near 40 Something

Nothing Exciting But True - May Contain Trains

Toad's Great Adventure

"I will, then, be a toad." -- Stephen Crane

Leaving Fundamentalism

various positions

All Things Rabyd

A blog dedicated to the thoughts, opinions, ideas and random madness of Edward W. Raby, Sr. - Pastor, Theologian, Philosopher, Writer, Bodybuilder and Football Fan. "Yes, the dog is foaming at the mouth. Don't worry, He just had pint of beer and is trying to scare you." This is a Theology Pub so drink your theology responsibly or have a designated driver to get you home as theology can be as intoxicating as alcohol.

Soul Gatherings

Spiritual Moments in the Human Experience

Anglican Memes

a humour site about the Church of England

A Sacred Conspiracy

To conspire... act in harmony toward a common or agreed upon end. God wants to conspire with us [and] this means that God calls us to give our lives to God, to surrender completely, so we may live more fully. Dallas Willard

Lavender and Broken Bones


Christus Pro Nobis

Christ for us


Developing Theological ideas


Qui vicerit, dabo ei sedere mecum in throno meo


More than a feeling ...

Bucket List Publications

Indulge- Travel, Adventure, & New Experiences


Opinions & ideas in NHS Dumfries and Galloway

Chicks In The Mitt

...we have a blog, therefore, we must be interesting...

The China Penguin

waddling from rice fields to ice-fields


A blog of Peter's Study Leave 2012

Journey to a healthy life...

and the maddness on the way there


A great site

%d bloggers like this: