I’m preaching on Valentines Day this year. I have a love/hate relationship with preaching. On one hand, I love communicating. I love words and the power that they hold. I love crafting them in a way that carries the most impact and will be the most memorable. I even love being on stage with a microphone. All of that is easy, believe it or not.
The hard part of sermon writing is asking this question, “God, what do YOU want me to say? What is on your heart for my audience (and MY life) and how can I represent YOU appropriately?” It’s a weight that I wish upon all of you because it forces the sermon writer to examine what God is stirring in our hearts and souls. If forces us to dive into His scriptures, research, study, and dissect His Word. It forces us to look into the parts of ourselves that need refining…ouch.
Another reason that I think all of you should write a sermon is because sometimes we lack clarity on how we really feel about an issue. For instance, how do you feel about forgiveness? I hear all of the time these words, “I can NEVER forgive that person.” But what if you were to preach on Matthew 11:25-26 – And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your sins. How can you reconcile unforgiveness when you are preaching about the fact that God can’t forgive you when you harbor unforgiveness in your heart? It’s riveting and humbling all at the same time!
I’m not going to tell you what I’m preaching about on Valentine’s Day,yet, but it’s not about sex or marriage and my text is not out of the Song of Solomon…that would be too obvious! It is about what God is stirring in my heart and the more I write, the more excited I get…not about preaching to you, but rather about the God that we serve. He’s big and I am grateful for the excuse of sermon writing to remind me of that all over again. See you on February 14.
I agree with your thoughts on the excitement there is in communicating a scriptural truth and what God is wanting to address in our lives. I also agree that at times it can be a crazy heavy burden, as you want to be as sensitive to what the Holy Spirit is saying needs to be addressed. Biblical truths will always be true, but sometimes, it’s that specific direction for a specific person (group) that carries a burden of responsibility.