Posted by Unknown |

I am reading a book at the moment called Ten Great Preachers. I tend to read it at night before I go to sleep.

The book has a sermon delivered by one of the "Great Preachers" followed by an interview with them. It's very inspiring. I'm really enjoying it. It's like I get good preaching, good preachers and then good sleep. And it makes me excited about preaching. The problem is though, that when I try and sleep I start thinking about my next sermon. I don't feel nearly as "great" as them.

There's this bit where Tony Campolo says that he preaches cause he enjoys it. He does over 400 speaking engagements a year. If I didn't have to write stuff, that could be cool. I think preaching is fun. It doesn't feel like it should be fun. It feels like it should be all serious and important and certainly not fun. It shouldn't be fun to handle the word of God. It should be serious business. It is serious, but it is fun too. Once you get there, and you're at the lectern (I'd love to say pulpit there, but I've never preached from a pulpit) and you have everyone ready to hear what you're going to say. You know you could sink, you could swim or you could blow everyone out of the water. It could be fantastic. You tell jokes and people laugh, you tell stories and people connect, you get serious and everyone goes quiet.

But that's not the funnest bit. My favourite bit is where I get to talk about the Gospel, especially to Christians*. When I get to stand up in church and tell people about the death of Christ and his glorious and amazing resurrection, that's fantastic. I can tell people that we're forgiven, we're new creations and we've God living in us. That's cool. That's fun. That's what it's all about. That's when you're soaring, because as good as anything is that you can pull out of the bag, as funny as your jokes are, as involving as any of your stories may be, or as potent as your wisdom is, the Gospel is always better. God's stories are better, his wisdom is timeless, and his Word brings life. And when it's God speaking, that's preaching, that's fun and that's a privilege.

*I do like preaching the Gospel to non-Christians, but it's harder work. You know they aren't onside with you and you have to explain it in their terms. So it's fun, but not nearly as fun as preaching to the converted. Then you're all agreeing and you can revel in the Gospel together.