“The expectations of a preacher are endless. Some members expect them to be omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent.But different preachers are wired differently.” That’s the way Thom Ranier began his article dealing with then things preachers don’t like about preaching. So, with apologies to Thom for sort of taking his title I decided to write from a different approach. What do preachers really love about preaching? What aspects do they enjoy the most?
Some preachers may really enjoy and be fulfilled by counseling while another dreads even the thought of it. So I did a little informal and very unscientific survey of a rather large number of preachers. We contacted a wide range of preachers (ages, length of time preaching, many different regions).
I asked them a simple question. “What do you like most about preaching?” It was an opened-ended question, and they were asked to give their top ten list. Some gave ten; others gave less than ten. They were all extremely helpful and insightful.
After a general reading with numerous answers here are the top ten things preachers like most about preaching with a comment from at least one preacher on each (they are in reverse order, you know David Letterman style)! Oh, and by the way, you may have your own list and we would love to see what you would add?
10. Flexibility of Schedule. “Preaching gives me the opportunity to spend more time in study in view of serving full-time. Whether it is study for sermons and lessons or personal study. I have more time to do these things than if I had a “regular” job. Ministry brings different challenges and opportunities. Days are different.”
9. That aha moment when somebody gets it. “That moment in the sermon when you utter the phrase you wanted, in the way you wanted, and by the reaction on at least one face, you KNOW “they got”—clearly understood the point you were trying to make. I love hearing a member say, ‘I really needed to hear that today.’ I love to see folks turning pages and giving feedback that shows that they are ‘into’ what you are saying.”
8. Growing closer to God. “I am thankful that my ‘job’ is to go deeper in the Word. It also strengthens me in the fact that I realize more and more as I study, and as I am called on to minister to a broken family, or asked to preach a difficult sermon, it is a reminder that I cannot do this along, that I need God in my life. I love preaching because it makes me want to be better. Knowing God’s Word deepens my own personal relationship with God.”
7. How it affects my family. “The opportunity for my wife and children to hear and see my love for God and His Word. Giving your family a unique and joyous view of the bride of Christ and the work you do.”
6. Proclaiming God’s Word. “You get to tell the greatest of all stories and share the richest of all treasures; all summed up in the name JESUS! It is tough to describe the rush I get by getting to preach God’s Word. I love standing in front of people and preaching.”
5. The fellowship of brethren. “Associating with some of the most incredible people in the world. I love the fellowship of brethren, those whose lives are also focused on living for God and serving Him. The blessing of being workers together with God.”
4. Helping people through difficult times. “Preachers get to share sacred moments in the lives of Christians – weddings, births, funerals, etc. Preachers are able to bring God’s comfort to souls who are hurting because of sickness and death, heartaches and disappointments, family problems, etc. I love the opportunities I’m given to help people in their great times of need. I enjoy being looked to for help and guidance. I love helping people.”
3. Association with other preachers. “I love the camaraderie of other gospel preachers. We may be the most automatic fraternity in the world. I love the opportunity I have as a preacher to associate with some of God’s most outstanding servants—my fellow preachers. The feeling of belonging to a fellowship of greatness.”
2. The study of God’s Word. “Preaching allows you the blessing of immersing yourself in the greatest book on earth. The chance to plunge deeply into biblical study. I get to dig deeper in Scripture than most. I love being able to commit my time to studying. When I learn something totally unexpected from my study.
1. Transformed lives. “There is nothing more important in this life than for someone to hear and obey the Gospel. We are able to witness the transformation that takes place in the lives of lost and broken people. Being engaged in God’s eternal plan. The privilege to provide hope. Preaching gives me the opportunity to make eternal differences.”
What would you add to this list?
Dear Father in Heaven, thank You for Your glorious Gospel. Thank You dear God for those who are involved in sharing that Good News with others. In the Name of Jesus we pray, Amen.