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How does one preach in a fragmented world that has lost its certainty about God? The answer, according to Thomas H. Troeger, is to reclaim the imaginative and visionary role of the preacher. Our job is to employ the creative elements of preaching to help Godís people imagine the new thing God is doing in our time. This kind of creative preaching comes when the preacher opens himself or herself, through the disciples of Godís Spirit.



Chapter 1 The Church Under Reconstruction

A Parable
The Loss of Commanding Certitude
Institutional Realism
Prelude to Preaching: Waiting and Worshiping
The History of Faith: the History of God-Shaped Holes
The Neatly Ordered Inter-Related Hierarchies
Open Truth to the Soul
The Glory of the Christian Religion
Spiritual Exegesis
Imaginative Accuracy
In the Bleak Midwinter
Five Principles for Visionary Preaching
The Hummings in the Soul

Chapter 2 The Spirit Sighs: Search for the True Cross

The Legend of Finding the True Cross
Journey to the Cross
Deadly Distortions of the Cross
The Restorative Powers of the True Cross
The Forgotten Prayer from the Cross
Were You There When They Crucified My Lord
The Location of the True Cross

Chapter 3 The Spirit Sighs: Follow the Living Christ

Asleep or Awake to Resurrection
Resurrection Here and Now
The Present-Tense Christ
No Longer in Commany
The Terror of Resurrection
Salvation 5.1: The Theological Delusions of Technology
Reading Christ in the Heart
The Whole Course Of Our Life
Extravagant Passions and Integratie Imagination

Chapter 4 The Spirit Sighs: Expand and Enlighten the Landscape of the Heart

From an Inverted Bowl to Globular Clusters
The Way the World Is Is the Way the World Is Not
Capturing the Imagination for God
Reconstructing the Church as a Friendly Environment for the Imagination
The Polyphonic Spirit of God
Includer of Everything, Ever Present, Ever Accompanying



"A new book by Tom Troeger is to me an event, for I know I will once again be in the hands of an imaginative and unique intelligence fueled by the energy of a loving heart. Tom here reminds us that if preaching is to add to the necessary and continuous reconstruction of the church in our time and in all times, it must be wonderfully, blessedly imaginative. It must drink deeply at the wells of poetry, history, and the natural sciences. Tom gives us especially full cups from which we may drink. As always, no better guide may be found for this needed journey of the imagination than Tom Troeger. His new book is more than a book, more than another 'how to preach' text. It is itself an experience of imagination, reminding us why we preach and why we must preach with eyes open, fully awake under the 'God-shaped hole' in the roofs of our churches, in the sky over all our heads. What a wonderful way to kick-start an imagination gone stale, a heart gone cold, a mind gone stiff. Give yourself a treat today and read this book. Its lucid prose and its cosmic reach will capture you and lure you far beyond your daily round."
-- John C. Holbert
Perkins School of Theology

"Thomas H. Troeger incisively gives us fresh language for naming the situation of the church in our time: under reconstruction. What is the call of the preacher during this transitional period of reconstitution? Through imaginative preaching, to help the church discover the vision of the Christ of the true cross and to learn how to follow this living Christ into fresh landscapes of heart and community that God is creating."
-- Ronald J. Allen
Christian Theological Seminary

"Tom Troeger has done it again! In Preaching While the Church Is Under Reconstruction, he has given us a vivid metaphor for our current situation, one by which he illuminates and explains where we are and what we can do. In compelling narrative style, Troeger gives image after image showing us how we can feel and think about preaching in a 'postmodern' age. In so doing, he opens up a new and refreshing imaginative landscape for those of us who must preach."
-- Donald F. Chatfield
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

Thomas Troeger is the Ralph E. and Norma E. Peck Professor of Preaching and Communications, Iliff School of Theology, Denver, Colorado.

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