Writing sermons

May 27, 2011

Rembrandt's "St. Paul in Prison," 1627.

I just posted on the social networks that writing sermons is like untangling a large knot each week. And it does feel like that much of the time. Never sure at first how to tackle it; never sure which loose end to pull; never sure if you’re following a useful lead. But I’m not complaining! Preaching for me is the best part of an already pretty terrific job, and it always repays the time put into it. I’m continually amazed that God gives me something (relatively) new to say each week.

But sermon-writing is more than problem-solving. It’s prayer. It’s spending fifteen to twenty hours a week talking with God. When we pray, we don’t always get a warm, reassuring feeling of God’s presence. We don’t always get that intuition that God is speaking to us. At least I don’t. Sometimes I do… But rarely more powerfully than today.

Thank you, Jesus, for your faithfulness!

2 Responses to “Writing sermons”

  1. It’s really good to hear someone talking about being a pastor as a pretty terrific job. I feel like as someone entering seminary, there are lots of strong voices talking about the down sides of the job. I just ready The Preaching Life by Barbara Brown Taylor and it sounds like the two of you approach preaching in a similar way. It’s inspiring.

    • brentwhite Says:

      There will be plenty of those voices, Heather. Just cover your ears. I hear all the negativity. I was at a clergy meeting a couple of years ago in which we broke up into small groups and were supposed to bare our souls (or something). Some clergy were saying, “Being a pastor is the hardest job,” blah-blah-blah. As I was not yet fully ordained at the time, I kept my mouth shut. But I was thinking, “What are you talking about? This job rules!”

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