It's been a couple of weeks now since I've been blogging on the Daily Office daily Gospel readings and RCL Sunday Gospel readings over on Beliefnet .
This is, as I've mentioned, turning out to be a most interesting experience because it continually pushes me out of my comfort zone...which, when dealing with Scripture, usually involves delving into commentaries and helps of all kinds before daring to offer my two cents.
A friend of mine, a fellow graduate of my lay ministry program who is going on to SAM (Synodically Authorized Minister) training, inspired me by telling me of a recent preaching retreat he attended where, at the end of the three days, the "final exam" consisted of a round-robin devotional: After the lesson of the day was read and the leader began a homily on it, each participant had to jump in and add to the devotional extemporaneously -- an exercise most Lutherans and especially layfolk would consider, I think, cruel and unusual punishment. But my pal gamely participated, and came away with more confidence in his ability to preach.
Using his example, I'm spending very little time academically spelunking the text. (Especially since I usually write these in the wee of the morning before I go to work.) The challenge for me is usually to, in this very quick-paced medium, find one idea in texts usually loaded with jumping-off points, and take it from there.
This is fun for me. And good practice for...well, for whatever.