A new year. A fresh start. A chance to begin again. New opportunities. A gift from the God who makes all things new. The big question for all of us is, what will we do with this new beginning?
Are there aspects of our life that we need to change? Is there something I need to do to become a better preacher? Of course, there are the usual New Year’s resolutions; study my Bible more, spend more time in prayer, spend more time with my family exercise, and everybody’s favorite; watch what I eat:)
Please allow me to make two short suggestions that might be of help to those who are struggling with their preaching and ministry.
Read something you’ve never read before about preaching. If you are really struggling and thinking about quitting, read Eugene Peterson’s book, “Under the Unpredictable Plant.” First published in 1992 but now available in paperback and on Kindle. Every preacher should read this book, multiple times. Even if you don’t agree with everything he writes, this book will help you.
I’ve recently started reading, “Letting the Text Win.” It seems like it’s going to be an excellent read. We would do well to reach as many books as possible each year on preaching (please feel free to share something that you have read on preaching that might help others).
Find someone to mentor. There is a young preacher or potential preacher near you who needs you. If they’re already preaching, take them out for a meal or a glass of tea. Ask them about their work. Pray with them. Talk about the upside of preaching, without boasting.
If the young man isn’t preaching yet, but you think he has potential, take him visiting with you. Talk to him about the need for preaching. Don’t talk about the problems in the beginning. There will be plenty of time to share that.
If you will be willing to mentor someone, it will not only bless them, but it will be a tremendous blessing for you. It will refresh you, it will inspire you, and it will be a great blessing to the Church you serve. May God bless you in all that you do for Him and may He bless your family in this coming year.