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why I love preaching, part one

When it comes to career advice, you’ve probably heard someone say: “Love what you do and do what you love.”  That’s good advice.  While there may be times that a job is difficult or unlovely, merely working for a paycheck is not enough to keep getting most of us out of bed every morning.

I began preaching before I was old enough to drive.  It’s true.  Several times I was asked to be a substitute preacher for a small church outside of Eureka, IL, and had to have an older friend drive me there.

I went to college (and then seminary) to better prepare myself to be a preacher.

Since the age of 15, preaching has been a part of my life.  Outside of my wife, kids, and black coffee, preaching is one of the things I love most in life.

So, let me share with you why I love preaching.

Whenever I stand before a congregation, I’m reminded that I’m really standing between two worlds (thanks, John Stott): the world as we know it and the world as God wants it to be.  For the next 25-30 minutes I will serve as an advocate and an ambassador.  The words I use will either build a bridge between those two worlds or make it harder to see the other side.  I love that tension.

When I sold sporting goods in high school, I interacted with customers for a few minutes, fitted them with shoes, and watched them leave the store.

When I am preaching, I’m keenly aware that something more is at stake than whether or not you buy Nikes or Adidas.  Not to be overly dramatic, but eternity does hang in the balance.

This is why preaching is not for the faint of heart.

It’s also one reason I love doing it and want to always learn how to improve.  It matters.