That is why I love listening to men like John Piper and Alistair Begg. They get it. The burden of preaching is heavy. It is an overwhelming responsibility to stand in a pulpit on the behalf of God, and preach His word. It is not some trivial thing and it always boggles my mind when men treat it as such. I want to say to those who treat it lightly: “You are standing their for God, not Johnny Carson, or Dr. Phil, or Oprah, but for the awesome, powerful, supreme and infinitely holy God of all creation. Why would you treat what you do with such a low view. You are not trying to win friends, or be liked. Your goal is to preach the most awesome truth to ever be given to mankind.”
I think that is why I treat it the way I do. I would love to be a comedian. But God has not called me to make people laugh. I would love to be liked. But He has not called me to be liked. I would love to adored, but again, He has not called me for those purposes. He has called me to preach His truth, from His word. Those other things may happen, but that is not the goal. The goal is to proclaim His truth, faithfully and with the respect that it is due.
That is why the weight of the sermon is too much at times. It is a heavy responsibility. I’m so grateful, He has not left me alone in these endeavors. I’m grateful He has given us His Spirit to work in me during the process of preparation, and delivering the sermon. I’m grateful that He buffets me throughout the week, letting me know that I am NOT worthy to be in this position. I’m only here in this position because He called me to it. He is the One that makes me worthy. He is the One that holds me upright. He is the One that keeps me on the straight and narrow path. Otherwise, I’m no different than Dr. Phil, Oprah, or Joel Osteen.
Romans 7:24-25b O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!