Heart & Soul

God told Isaiah that one day he would speak to his people with foreign lips and strange tongues. None was stranger than the torrent of profanity through which he spoke to my friend Louis Evans, Jr., early one evening.

He was sitting in his study, staring blankly out the window at the row of trees that lined the foundation of the sanctuary. The church needed to change but wouldn't. He had tried to tweak its structures and renovate its forms to make new skins for the new wine of the Spirit. But one brilliant idea after another had been heaped on the junk pile of board vetoes and congregational indifference.

Suddenly Louis heard the church's groundskeeper fill the air with some of the most vituperative--and creative--profanity he had ever heard. Louis went outside to ask what was the matter.

Several weeks before, the groundskeeper had suffered a long illness and was forced to leave his job for a period. In the interim, the church hired an outside company to care for the grounds. The grounds- ...

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