Friday, January 4, 2008

Calling down Christ

Hey, preparing for Sunday's message, and thought I'd share a little anecdote.

My church doesn't celebrate the Lord's Supper all that often. (Been without a regular full-time pastor for a long time...) So when we do, I have a desire to get the largest "bang for the buck" possible. I mean, I want to take fullest advantage. We're going to do it this Sunday, Deo volente.

All week long this thought has struck me: When I preach, I want Christ, and Him crucified, to be so plain and, as it were, visible to the congregation in my preaching, that it will be as difficult for them to avoid Him as it would be if He were laid in front of the pews broken and bloody. That's what I want my preaching to do, make Jesus that vivid. And that vision has been vivid for me, let me tell ya!

All week long, that has been the topic of my prayers.

Well, I finally came to the point last night in my preparation when I realized that I am a below-average preacher to begin with, and so have little hope of being able to construct a message, or to artfully arrange the words, so that this actually happens.

And as I was pouring my heart out to God on this count, it occurred to me that I was acting like a Roman Catholic priest in the entire affair.

He thinks he can mumbo the jumbo and re-create the Body and Blood on his altar. And I'm sitting here disappointed and frustrated at not being able to do the same thing with my preaching.

I was powerfully reminded of exactly what it is I've been called to do, and that is, to the declare the Message of God's grace in Christ, as the Father empowers me in His Spirit. To preach the Word, as God gives me utterance.

How, and in what manner, God decides (or doesn't) to show up in that preaching is His business, including whether or not my people are given eyes to see and ears to hear.

Just preach it, brethren.


Rhett said...


Thanks for sharing that.

rpavich said...

You just preach the word as clearly as you know how...

Some of the most beautiful messages I've ever heard have been the simple, unadulterated gospel message.

gordan said...


You are of course correct. It is the Lord who brings the increase, and He doesn't need our cleverness to make it happen. Amen.