Tuesday, February 07, 2017
So.... I agreed to preach a sermon in a church again. It's not until the end of April. And it's at our church back home - where my parents attend. Ironically, the pastor is taking a sabbatical this Spring and is looking to fill the pulpit with different people each week. I called him today to confirm the date (he texted me Sunday to see if I would) and I told him I hope his sabbatical turns out better than mine. :)
I suppose I've been warming to the idea of preaching lately. This coming May will be four years since I've done it, and I can't really say that I've missed it at all. I really do enjoy listening to others preach/teach. It's still not something I really want to do, but I have been feeling the need to participate somehow lately. I have admittedly not been living up to my calling.
I have been asked two other times to fill in for people and have declined. They were both fairly soon after I was canned. I think the big difference now is that this was my home church asking. This is the church where Jane grew up and spent her whole life until we moved away. We were married in this church. Saved in this church (if you will). Baptized there. Discipled there. And they actually paid for part of my seminary education. Yet this is the FIRST TIME they have ever asked me to preach there. So while I didn't feel obligated, I did feel like maybe this was part of some divine plan. Who knows.
Of course I was pretty excited about it until I went and posted something on Facebook. I'd been thinking about what text I would use and things, but then as more and more people commented on my post... I started to get a little nervous. I greatly appreciated the encouragement, don't get me wrong, but I'm not sure I am ready to jump back in with both feet just yet. I don't know that I EVER want to do it full-time again. I do feel like it's a significant step though. Towards what I do not know.
So, I feel kind of weird. I'm a little scared, but I'm a little excited too. Honestly, I would like to be able to have a couple sermons on hand so I could fill in at the church we attend, as well as at a couple friends churches if they need someone last-minute. I kind of feel like that's where we're at right now - at a place to help out some pastor friends.
Right away I planned to preach from the Beatitudes. I've been reading and studying that lately, and we've been going through it at our church. I love the text. I was kind of hoping I had an old sermon from that text, but I can't seem to find one. I'm sure I've preached on it AT LEAST once over a fourteen year period, but I don't have all my sermons saved on computer. So I will probably just write something new. Although I have thought of checking the lectionary texts for that day too. I think if - and it's a big IF - I ever pastored a church again, or preached on a regular basis, I would just read the lectionary texts each Sunday, and forget trying to write sermons. Trust the text, you know.
Anyway, so that's what's happening with that. I do not feel "worthy" to preach again, but I also do not feel any pressure either. I don't intend to rely on my creativity, but simply trust in the Word. At least I want to try to.