My friend organized a lecture by author/commentator Eric Metaxas at All Saint's Church in Dallas. First, I had not really heard about Metaxas apart from his Bonhoffer biography. I was totally unaware until about two days prior to the lecture of his immense groundswell of popularity that had gained momentum in the last year or two. His speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast, his involvement in a very well-received film (and his authoring the book inspiring it!), more or less creating the Veggie Tales series: all of these things speak to an incredibly adept, multifarious intellect. The man can think.
And I enjoyed his speech immensely. He spoke on a topic that is unfortunately applies all to well to my life: rote religion in contrast to an animating, genuine faith. It's a great topic, and one that everyone needs to hear. While I admit that this message would convict me, I would also hazard that it should convict many others in the Church. Metaxas did a good job delivering this truth.
In spite of my enjoying his speech, I don't know how much I buy into his schtick. More on this later.
Why Colonel Sartoris?
Allow me to explain the puzzling title. Colonel Sartoris is William Faulkner's greatest character. He exemplifies those values that his society cherishes, namely tradition, patriarchy, courtliness, and courage. Though modernity's slow march tries to strip him of these things, Sartoris continues to live as he always has, knowing that "the past is never dead. It's not even past." He seeks order in the honorable folkways and mores of his forbears. Let us not forget his example.