During the move I took two weeks off from preaching. It was, I suppose, necessary. I had tons of work to do and no time to study, but I sure missed preaching. The privilege, the challenge, the adrenaline... Preaching is like breathing to me. When I am not preaching it is like holding my breath.
Of course, there is a sense in which preaching is terrifying. The Bible is the word of God. Preaching is a tremendous responsibility and no matter what I do, I always fall short of what I would have liked to do in preparation and presentation. I live in fear of misrepresenting the truth of the word - or even of giving people a wrong impression.
On Monday I posted my Sunday sermon to my web page. That adds another level of insecurity. Preaching - at least for me - is a very personal thing. I prepare through study and prayer to the best of my ability. I open myself up to people as I preach. I preach to the audience before me - and their responses and feedback during the sermon affect my presentation (though hopefully not my message). To put that sermon on the web where it could be accessed by pretty much anybody in the world hits me in my insecurities.
But, it is what it is. In twenty-one years of pastoral ministry I have preached thousands of messages. I try to learn from my mistakes, but I can't allow myself to obsess about them. I can only pray that God will use them in people's hearts as I turn my attention to the next message.
So, I am back in the pulpit again! Praise God!! This is what God made me to do, and I count myself tremendously blessed to be back at it.
God is great and greatly to be praised!
Have a blessed week.