"This preaching stuff is so easy. Anybody can do it. All you have to do is one thing." Somebody told me that once upon a time. You know, it got me to thinking, they were right.
I’ve been preaching in 5 decades now - and it dawns on me preaching is about one thing - relevance. I mean that pretty much everything now-a-days. If you aren’t relevant then you probably aren’t influencing anybody. You must be relevant - well, and biblical.
Yeah, biblical. I mean the stock market is relevant in some people’s life but it makes no eternal difference. So, that’s it just being relevant and biblical. Speaking ancient truths to a modern world with integrity.
Just those three things: Speaking ancient biblical truth with relevance into a modern world while striving to practice what you preach - try to live with you preach. Because, you know, without the integrity behind your words do you really believe what you’re preaching. So relevance, be biblical and do with integrity. All with large measure of forgiveness.
So, those four things. No more. Biblical truth, relevance, integrity and forgiveness. You’ve just got to have that. You have to learn to forgive yourself ‘cause you won’t always practice what you preach - it you did it would either mean you were perfect or weren’t preaching everything you believe. And to do local work well, you can’t hold grudges. You have to forgive others for their mistakes, for things they say and don’t mean and things they say and mean. You just have to stay connected with the people if you going to know and love them.
It’s just those six things: Speaking biblical truth, relevance, integrity, forgiveness of self and others, staying connected to their lives, being involved with and aware of them with love. Yes, love. You've got to love a lot - God Christ, the Spirit, His Word, His People, the lost. So stay current. Well, you’ve got to stay current - not just with the people but with the culture around you - tuned in (know the times). As the old preacher said preach with the Bible in one hand and the local paper in the other.
Preaching. It’s simple. Just those seven things: Teach truth with relevance and integrity while enjoying and practicing loving forgiveness, connected to the people you live among while aware of what’s happening in our world. You just got to stick with it. Be consistent.
Those eight things: Be biblical, relevant, a person if integrity, forgive, stay connected and do it with consistency. You have to be grounded, to make a real impact you have to make a long term commitment to the people you live among. Live that life full and consistent. It makes an impression on people. But don’t forget your own spiritual life. You can’t forget to study not just for preaching but to nurture your own spiritual health.
Really, just those nine things. And you better enjoy it if you are not going to lose your mind or burn out. You’ve got a lot of heady stuff to deal with and you have to laugh a lot - at yourself and at all the cray stuff around you.
So, just those ten things: Biblical, relevant, full of integrity, forgiving, connected, consistent, spiritual growing and light in spirit. And you better keep a tender heart or you’ll become so calloused you’ll never touch anybody. You’ll go about and do your work but it will be stale and mechanical.
Just those eleven things. Oh well. Glad this preaching stuff is so easy. Anybody can do it.