We just returned from a study-leave, in which I attended the preaching seminar sponsored by Calvin Theological Seminary’s Center for Excellence in Preaching called “Imaginative Reading for Creative Preaching.” This seminar occurred at the beautiful Snow Mountain Ranch in Colorado. Although we had to travel a considerable distance to attend this learning event, it was well-worth it, for a few reasons. First, this was a chance for us to connect as a family and to meet other pastoral families. By doing so, we were able to deepen our family friendships and make some new ones. I had some very meaningful conversations about life and ministry with these new colleagues that I am still reflecting on. Moreover, I continue to reflect on the conversations that occurred in the classroom about good reading for preaching. I left this seminar with a new appreciation for words and with a desire to writes sermons for the ear, not for the eyes. So how do you do this? According to one of our mentors, the Rev. Dr. Cornelius Plantinga, Jr., this sort of writing, which he called “noble prose,” develops (in part) as we pay attention to good writing, especially well-written novels for young adults (e.g., Gary D. Schmidt). I was also reminded of the power of poetry to awaken our senses, as we read poems from Jane Kenyon and Robert Frost. I was deeply moved and encouraged by this seminar, perhaps most of all when we worshipped together as students each morning. I want to publicly thank Calvin Theological Seminary for organizing and sponsoring this event, Wolf Creek Community Church for allowing me to attend, and my family for joining me on this journey of discovery. And I thank the Lord for new hope and inspiration.