Tuesday, February 5, 2013

For Christ's Sake, Love, Love, Love: Sermon by Bill Fortier

Sermon for February 3, 2012

Bill Fortier

 Jesus: Maybe if we pray this sermon all together, everyone can overlook my terrible credentials when it comes to love. Help these cherished friends to see past my half heart, to hear your music, singing love songs in their beloved ears. Amen.

Because I cant help myself, lets start with some science: In the late nineties, Christopher Chabris and Daniel Simons conducted their first run of their, now famous, invisible gorilla experiment. These two young scientists wanted to build on the science of attention. By this time, scientists had figured out that our visual attention and visual perception wasn't all that sharp. Our glossy big bubbles keep getting popped by these guys.

So these two young dudes set up an experiment where folks are told to watch a basketball game. A guy in a gorilla costume walks right through the players. Now here's the thing: an astonishing number, half to three quarters of the viewers (!), don't see the gorilla! This experiment has been conducted tons of times now and the scenarios have been changed, again and again, just to make sure it isn't some kind of innate basketball deficiency. The experiment and it's numbers stand. We're Mr and Ms Magoo when it comes to seeing stuff that's right in front of us. We see what we expect and want to see: road hog!

Chapter 13 in Paul's First Letter to the Corinthians is an invisible gorilla right in the middle of the New Testament. It hides in plain sight, mostly in weddings. We just hear the word love, love, love echoing in the