Friday, October 12, 2007

Maintaining Perspective

I had the privilege of preaching at a church that is in transition. At the moment, they are looking for a new pastor. I was pleased with the opportunity as I feel called to be a pastor and preaching/ teaching is going to be a major role for me in ministry. However, I have found I am dealing with an inner tension. Let me explain...

I have a gift of singing and leading worship. As humbly as I can say this I am continually affirmed in this gift. It took some time but I am at a place where I am in complete freedom when I lead worship through song. I am not worried about what people may say or think. It does not matter to me that there are 1200 people I am singing in front of on Sunday morning, in my heart I am only singing to One...God himself. I do so with passion, confidence and freedom. This is only because I know I am lost in my worship of the one true God. It is Him I am singing to and no one else.

The tension I am feeling lies in my preaching. I want to begin by saying that I do enjoy preaching. I love exegeting the Word of God and explaining it to people. I enjoy challenging them to take seriously their claim to Christ and live what they profess...You get the idea.

However, I am noticing something about preaching that is different than singing. When I preach I know that I am not preaching to God like when I sing. Preaching is to people. It is to challenge people. It is in front of people. People judge whether or not I did a good or bad job.

As a result I find myself less free when I preach. I am wondering how my delivery is coming off and being received. Am I capturing the attention of the congregation? Are they engaging in the message? Are they being challenged, encouraged and/or edified? In short are they getting anything out of what I am saying or am I just waisting their time?

These are honest questions and feelings that I hope come with the newness of preaching. I hope they will go away as my confidence builds in my preaching gift in the same way it has with my singing gift.

I do not know what I am even asking for really. Just looking for some encouragement to help me in Maintaining Perspective.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So, Matt, how can you lose yourself in the preaching in the same way that you lose yourself in the music? Both are expressions of your heart - could it be that the confidence that you feel in singing just isnt there yet when you preach? A suggestion - instead of wondering how you are doing while you are preaching, beforehand, get on your knees and ask God to guide all of your words. Ask Him to not let you utter one word that is not from Him. Then you wont have to worry about YOUR delivery - just that you delivered. I know its easy to say, and maybe even cliche, but - give it to God, Matt.
Just a girl