The Word of the Day is Grace: An Interview with David Zahl

It’s not everyday that you get the opportunity to talk with from someone who is influential in your thinking and learning. For me, yesterday was that day, and I want to share it with you.

I had the privilege of having a conversation with David Zahl from Mockingbird Ministries earlier this week. To say that David (and Mockingbird) have been helping to shape my thinking would be a true statement and, in some ways, an odd thing to say. You see, the message they articulate, as they readily admit, is not their message. As their name impliues, mockingbirds sinn a song that they’ve be given. Similarly, David and Mockingbird MInistries share a message of grace -- the message of freedom in Jesus that doesn’t belong to anyone. Their faithful “repeating” of grace has been a needed balm to my soul. I have been deeply encouraged, moved, and inspired by the way God is using Mockingbird as a whole and David in particular. I mean, if a guy can lead you to admit our universal need for grace by discussing Seinfeld clips, aren’t you in too?

So, I’m thrilled to share this conversation with you via our podcast. This week’s episode of The Slow Down is brought to you by the letter “g” for grace. Russ and I have a conversation with David Zahl and I think you’re going to be encouraged, challenged, and laugh. The conversation begins and ends with grace, but in between they discuss answer critics with hugs, Robert Farrah Capon, humor, the Mockingbird NYC Conference, and more.

Want some examples? Here are a couple quotes from David Zahl on the podcast:

“Maybe the life of ministry is just being there. Being present across the table, if by God’s grace, we get to be there when the ‘death’ (coming to end of self) occurs.”

“Every voice out there is telling us we are not free. That we have to do something to leverage love. So, sometimes it can be a lonely thing to proclaim the beauty and radical fulness of the gospel."

I invite you to listen in on this conversation and be refreshed anew in the goodness of the grace of Jesus.

And if you’re in the NYC area, consider joining Mockingbird for their conference April 26-28.

I hope you enjoy it! Episode 013 - The Word of the Day is Grace: An Interview with David Zahl

Here’s a little more about David. I highly recommend Law and Gospel: A Theology for Sinners (and Saints) as well as the Mockingcast.


David Zahl is the director of Mockingbird Ministries and editor-in-chief of the Mockingbird blog. Born in New York City and brought up elsewhere, David graduated from Georgetown University in 2001, and then worked for several years as a youth minister in New England. In 2007 he founded Mockingbird in NYC. Today David and his wife Cate reside in Charlottesville, VA with their three boys, where David also serves on the staff of Christ Episcopal Church. His first book, A Mess of Help: From the Crucified Soul of Rock N’ Roll, appeared in 2014. Most recently, David co-authored Law and Gospel: A Theology for Sinners (and Saints) with Will McDavid and Ethan Richardson. Even after all these years, he’s still mourning the end of Calvin and Hobbes (and hoping that Morrissey and Marr will bury the hatchet). His favorite theologian is probably a cross between Johnny Cash, Flannery O’Connor and his brother Simeon.






Gino Curcuruto