Yesterday’s SWOTD reminded me that I’ll be preaching (assuming I’m well enough) in Edinburgh on 8th December.
Its almost a year after I last preached (although thats not actually true as I led out in worships/devotionals at the camp in summer) and its strange to think that I used to do this every week.
Funnily enough it was actually easier to prepare for when I was preparing a sermon almost weekly than it is annually! I must have used every approach- I went from preaching from a complete text (actually quite useful as I printed out a copy in font 16 for a deaf member!) to using notes to keywords (once a member couldn’t believe the piece of paper he found in the pulpit with 6 words on it were my sermon notes...).
I think the secret was the fact that I used to live with the text for a week. I’d be reading it on saturday and sunday after church, then after a day off on Monday i’d be back with it. I’d read around it, I’d ask questions of it, I’d look for answers, during the week my visits and bible studies would impact on it and by the time i got to look at other book/commentaries by the end of the week I would normally have a handle on it. Thursday it would be coming together and usually by friday it was there...
Now without that routine I’m kinda lost! I have a title though (but I find that I forget my ideas as they are spread out over weeks not days!) so if you’re in the area hopefully I’ll have “beginnings and endings” ready by December!