Windowsill Pies at Market of Artists and Designers (MAAD) and The Preacher’s Idols
Reports of their death were greatly exaggerated. Windowsill Pies (facebook) will be moving out from their current premises at Pandan Valley Condominium, but will still take orders sans bricks-and-mortar. That it wasn’t the last hoorah from the boys made the tasting platter slightly more enjoyable.
Most people liked the milk chocolate pudding and sticky dark chocolate layer of the S’mores pie – didn’t get to taste the homemade graham cracker but the toasted marshmellows actually seemed like they had been on BBQ grill after the meats (yes, they were probably just fired by a hand-held blowtorch, but a roast-meat flavour had crept in somehow). The strawberry lemon pie came a popular second, though i would have preferred less emulsifiers in the strawberry bit. My favourite was the banana cognac almond brittle pie – the cognac mascarpone really complemented the banana mousse and the salty-sweet crunch of almond brittle (think almond roca) prevented it all from getting too jerlat.
The morello cherry pie and apple pie were properly done and a hit with the older folk. The young ones, of course, liked sugared shortcrust lattice top of the cherry pie. Pumpkin pie with bourbon whip was alright but it was up against stiff competition and the judges were all nursing sweet teeth.
The Gwee brothers, Sean and Jonathan, have proved their ability to make good-tasting food with Bramble, so it was no surprise that the sandwiches Grilled Cheese Diner at Friday night’s Market of Artists and Designers (MAAD) were delicious. Cheese Sandwich: I liked that they brushed the bread slices with melted butter first before smearing on the French mustard and then topping with shredded cheddar that would melt into yummy gooey-ness on the hotplate. Classic pairing with tomato soup. The addition of meat, in the Pot Roast Sandwich, just made everything so much better.
Tom’s Palette set up an any size – any price ice-cream box just next to them. Couldn’t quite taste the strawberry cheesecake flavour after the sandwiches but the chocolate was thick and dark and good. There was also a cake pop counter by Moofy Pops but didn’t have time to wait for the cooing crowds to clear to check it out.
Wandered around the MAAD (facebook) market venue at the Red Dot Design Museum some, had a few chats, got quotes for some akan datang projects, stopped by City Nomads‘ photobooth, then needed to leg-it to raid an iStore before closing time.
Working through Derek Tidball’s Preacher, keep yourselves from idols. Very instructive even for non-preachers.
John Calvin insisted that “the human mind is, so to speak, a perpetual forge (factory) of idols”. While believers have dethroned idols and have bowed in service to the living God (1 Thessalonians 1:9), lifeless idols (paradoxically) continue to snap at their heels.
The preacher is not immune. While no evangelical preachers will bow to a literal image, he is more particularly a vulnerable to the kind of idolatry that us a distortion of what is good. Tidball organises the “factory of idols” into four categories: idols associated with the self, the age, the task, and the ministry.
The Idol Of Self
Because we acknowledge the importance of God’s word in Christian growth, evangelicals put much importance in the preaching of God’s word from the pulpit. But, says Tidball, there is no biblical mandate to say that the most important preaching of God’s word should be from the pulpit.
The idol of the pulpit
Inflated ideas of pulpit preaching can lead preachers to inflated ideas of themselves. But preachers are merely members using the particular gifts God has given them among the many others to whom God has given different gifts. A right estimate of preaching would lead preachers to personal humility, to the deposing of pride, and the exalting of grace. The preacher must ask himself if he wants to be remembered as a great preacher, or if he is content, as he should be, to be a mere messenger for a great God.
A correct evaluation of preaching magnifies the sovereignty of God. It is not the preacher’s words that enters people’s lives and transforms them. The same sermon preached by the same person may have different effects on different occasions. It is not the “preaching” as such which is the secret, but the sovereignty free Spirit who chooses in occasion to use preachers.
The idol of authority
The idol of authority is three-fold:
- the preacher’s authority lies in the sermon being a declarations of the word of God to humans, therefore God’s authority is inherent within it;
- the Spirit works in and through the words of the preacher and in the ears of the listeners to accomplish God’s purposes;
- the preacher’s authority lies in him being a faithful messenger of God’s word in Scripture.
But the authority of God’s word can too easily become the authority of the preacher’s word, eg. when the preacher uses the pulpit:
- to preach at people who disagree with him (doctrinally or personally),
- to drive his church to adopt his particular vision and plans for growth and development,
- to beat up his congregation because he feels they are not supportive of church activities or not doing enough attending, giving, praying, witnessing etc,
- to pronounce on detailed political, social, or economic policy,
- to voice his personal prejudice on everything.
The world is characterised by a lust for power. The preacher is not immune and in fact, since preachers speak an authoritative message on behalf of a powerful God, and play a significant role in the leadership of God’s people, they are particularly vulnerable to its temptations and can easily be seduced. Step-by-step, the authoritative message becomes the authoritative messenger, becomes the autocratic leader whose word on any issue must be obeyed. The preacher soon becomes addicted to the recognition, even adulation, and begins to enjoy the trappings of power.
The idol of popularity
This one is fairly self-explanatory. Preaching must be for people’s improvement not entertainment. Preachers must never be fooled by popularity and think that the praise they receive for preaching is a true measure of its worth or effectiveness. They should realise that the basis on which people praise them is often faulty – more on par with how people would rate a reality television show or a concert rather than the instruction of God being given. As the current state of social media demonstrates, crowds are fickle. The preacher must remain independent of the opinion of the crowd and strive to preach God’s word faithfully.