Sermon Illustrations


One of my very favorite stories is told by Gertrud Mueller Nelson in To Dance with God: Family Ritual and Community Celebration. It’s the first thing she says at the beginning of Chapter 1:

"Some years ago, I spent an afternoon caught up in a piece of sewing I was doing. The wastebasket near my sewing machine was filled with scraps of fabric cut away from my project. This basket of discards was a fascination to my daughter Annika, who, at the time, was not yet four years old. She rooted through the scraps searching out the long bright strips, collected them to herself, and went off. When I took a moment to check on her, I tracked her whereabouts to the back garden where I found her sitting in the grass with a long pole. She was affixing the scraps to the top of the pole with great sticky wads of tape.

"I’m making a banner for a procession," she said. "I need a procession so that God will come down and dance with us." With that she solemnly lifted her banner to flutter in the wind and slowly she began to dance.

[Gertrud Mueller Nelson, To Dance with God: Family Ritual and Community Celebration, (Paulist Press: New York, 1986), 3]

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