"You need to enter into a person's worldview, challenge that worldview and retell the story based on the Gospel."
Keith Plummer covers the recent New York Times piece on Tim Keller.
Two elements of Keller's ministry strike me as flying in the face of much conventional wisdom about church growth. First, he doesn't shy away from dealing with difficult doctrines publicly. It's refreshing to see a preacher who doesn't treat the Bible's hard teachings like dirty laundry to be aired only among the members of the family. If Jesus didn't do this, neither should his followers.Worthwhile read.
The second thing that stands out is that Dr. Keller is apparently unafraid to exercise the cognitive muscles of his congregation by preaching at a level that requires some stretching. If the fashion designer quoted in the article is representative of the rest of the congregation, this dimension of his preaching is appreciated by those who regularly attend. I suspect that we all too frequently underestimate the capacity of those in the pew to follow intellectually challenging messages. Failing to engage people's minds with the gospel's claims and implications leaves them with the mistaken notion that the faith is tailored to only a portion of our humanness.