Sermon Illustrations

Wayne Muller, in his book “Learning to Pray,” writes, “In northern California, there is fog in the morning. As I write this, looking out my window, I know that the mountains and the trees, the grasses and the sky, remain hidden in the fog, but I cannot see them with my eyes.

Instead, I feel their presence in my body, I know the shapes that lie behind the fog for having seen them, watched them emerge again and again. It is a primitive kind of faith, based on repetition and proof, but a kind of faith that the fog will, indeed, lift. Slowly, as the sun warms the earth, the fog begins to clear.

And as it does, outlines appear, colors, textures, and, finally, the sky and sun are quietly revealed and I can see them all. This is prayer. This is deep, faithful listening, waiting for what is hidden to be revealed.

Prayer is not words; prayer is what happens when you listen and wait, beneath the words, for the outline of heaven to emerge.”