A preacher I knew years and years ago had a hand in today’s message, and every single one I ever preach. He often spoke about grand, majestic themes of the Bible, but left them hanging out in la-la land without telling us why we should care and what we could do about it. There were Sundays when I just about stood up and screamed. I concur with the late D.L. Moody, who said that it’s a sin to bore people with the Gospel.
After listening to more scream inducing messages than I can count, I vowed to myself and to God that I would never — quote me on that, never — speak a message that left anyone asking, “So what?” I literally agonize with the practicality of every single message that comes out of my mouth. And the other rule is that for it to come out of my mouth, it has to go through my heart first. No exceptions.
When I’m preaching I feel alive. I’ve often had a sense like, “I was born for this.” When I’m in ‘the zone’ — helping people awaken to God and his kingdom and showing them how to live that out — there is nowhere on earth I’d rather be. Not at the beach, not on a mountain peak (and yes, I’ve been on mountain peaks), not at Disneyland.
Today one parishoner said, “Brad, that couldn’t have been clearer if you tried.” So I offer one more thank-you to the scream-inducing preacher. My congregation thanks him too, wherever he is.