Monday, October 27, 2008

singles and homeruns

Well, it is World Series time and if the Rays don't find their bats, it'll be over tonight, but i see parallel in preaching and baseball (actually i see spiritual allegory in all sport, but that's another blog). Can I let you in on a preacher's heart a little? As a preacher I consider it a high privilege to actually open God's Word and talk on his behalf every Sunday. And I pray for, prepare for, and hope for life altering stuff every week. You know my commitment to the Word of God, so I already know something good will happen because it's the Word. But honestly, using a baseball analogy, I hope to hit a homerun every Sunday. I desire for revival-starting preaching every Sunday that i preach and .... here's the reality. I hit a lot of singles.

This is never more evident than after hitting a homerun. Last Sunday (not yesterday, the week before) was a homerun Sunday. The message was hard hitting (you shall not commit adultery), the decision time was awesome, I received tons of positive feedback and the bookstore sold a bunch of c.d.s As a preacher, these are the Sundays you really feel good about.

Then comes, "you shall not steal". I prayed, prepared and preached the same as last week...and well, I think I hit a single. Now, I've come to know in my head that singles are just as important and when it comes to preaching a year of singles (non spectacular, but Bible driven messages of truth) it is just as effective as hitting homeruns. But emotionally, I left the stage yesterday feeling like I had swung for the fences and missed. I know, I know. Many of my trusted friends have given me feedback that it was a good sermon. But as a preacher, i wanted it to be so much more. I know that God will use it, because his Word always changes us and forms us and challenges us and moves us closer to him. So, I'll take the single, but I want you to know that this week in "you shall not bear false witness" I'm swinging for the fences - you may want to sit in the balcony!

Next Monday at this time, I'll be flying out of NYC to Athens (not Kentucky, Greece) for a trip through many of the biblical sites of the book of Acts (Athens, Corinth, Thessalonica, Philippi, etc...) Sara and I are joining Bob and Sandi (missions pastor at our church) and several other pastors from around the country for this life changing experience. prayerfully, we will lead a trip for our congregation some time soon, but in the meantime, I'm looking forward to connecting with my spiritual heritage.

2 comments:

Janice said...

Mike, our small group had quite a discussion last night on your topic of not stealing. You had quite an impact on us. We are amazed at how God works in you and brings us so much to think about and pray about. Thank you. Boy, I do envy your trip!!! what a wonderful experience. Be safe.

Dave Owens said...

Mike,

I love you brother, but I have some bad news for you.....YOU hit a single every week. In your defense, It is a really good single. right up the line, with the infield un-able to get to it. Seriously, every time you're up to bat, you swing well, flat, and with really good follow through.

Now a week and a half ago, during the Adultery message, the HOLY SPIRIT took that single, and turned it in to a home run. We'll give you the credit for swinging the bat, and all of the training that goes into your performance at the plate, after all, if you didn't swing the bat, (and swing it so well) then we wouldn't have the chance to watch so many home runs.
actually sometimes you hit doubles, and I've seen a triple or two also...

Peace,
DaveO

P.S. I've also seen you field a couple of pretty tough hits, and take it like a pro when someone slides into base with there spikes pointed at you. Keep on preachin' Brother, you're doing a great job.