I’m preaching on Sunday night and it keeps hitting me how scary a prospect this actually is. I’m full of doubts, Will I mess up? will I say something blasphemous? will I just get the whole thing wrong??? I’ve got so many worries and fears about the whole thing. This isn’t my first time, but I have these constant worries before each sermon.
I spent some time with my pastor today and just had a chat about these things and also various questions about the atonement.
The first thing is that I need to remember that the sermon is not all about me. All those questions I had, began with me, the worries focus around myself; Will I, What if I etc. But it does not rely on me – it relies on God, it relies on the Holy Spirit speaking. Yes, if I’m living a life that contradicts what is being exposed from the Scripture then I need to reassess myself, I need first and foremost to preach to myself – I need to deal with myself first, and God will help me do that. Not only help me, but he will do it.
The second things is that though I am a weak, frail, earthen vessel and God is my strong tower (Psalm 61:3). Just look at Peter, even after denying his Lord, he spoke so powerfully during Pentecost! As Spurgeon walked up to his church he would say with every step, “I believe in the Holy Spirit”. I need to believe that God will presence himself in the expounding of his Word. I need to believe and trust him in that.
There’s a lot more to it than that, but today I pray that I’ll learn these two things more – that it isn’t all about how I perform, and that I need to trust God and hold him to his Word – he will be with me, he will help me, he will give me the grace while I speak his most amazing Word.