bits and pieces of clouds, ether, maybe even ideas

Willow Creek Association – WILLOW Magazine – A Very Different Kind of Communicator – Issue 1, 2003

Willow Creek Association – WILLOW Magazine – A Very Different Kind of Communicator – Issue 1, 2003.


Some of the communication methods Rob Bell has employed to communicate Scripture
When preaching a sermon on mankind being God’s workmanship, Bell had artists stationed at all the entrances and scattered throughout the church either painting, playing music, or sculpting. Everyone who attended the service was given a chunk of clay and instructed to create something with their fingers as Bell talked to them about how God formed them.
To illustrate the need to silence our souls before God, Bell stood perfectly still without saying a word for 45 minutes. The teaching was text on the side screens. One of the slides said, “For some of you right now, the silence is killing you. You would do anything for me to say something.” The next slide said, “Bummer for you.”
To illustrate God’s provision and protection, he strapped his newborn son to his back and did an entire sermon walking through the aisles of the church, simulating a walk through the woods. Throughout the sermon, he had to stop and occasionally feed his son to keep him quiet. This became the first of his DVDs, “Rain.” (See “Expanding the Boundaries,” below.)
Bell handed out apple slices to the congregation at the beginning of a service. Throughout his message, he kept referring to the apples and how pure and white they were when they were first cut and how brown they were turning as decay was setting in.
To illustrate the instilling of love for God’s Word employed by rabbis in the Old Testament, bottles of honey were handed out to the congregation and everyone was asked to put a drop of honey on their fingers. More than 30 minutes passed before Bell got to the passage in Scripture about God’s Word being honey on the lips of the reader. The congregation then licked the honey off their fingers, providing them with a greater understanding of this old, yet effective, communication technique.

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