Home Pastors Preaching & Teaching You May Be Called to Preach, but You Still Need a Role...

You May Be Called to Preach, but You Still Need a Role Model

That preacher does not know me from Adam.

I’m glad, because he would probably not be pleased with anything that follows.

I sat in the church recently where he was filling in for the regular pastor. It was a small church and the service was poorly done, I regret to say, from beginning to end. I know that sounds harsh, and I am no judge of anyone’s worship.

But some things are obvious to everyone.

No one involved in that church service–I’m hesitant to call it a worship service–seemed to have a clue of this being a time of worship, of reverence and holiness. No advance thought had been given to the songs to sing, prayers to be offered or comments made. Everything was off the cuff. The welcome and hymn-introductions were silly and went on and on.

My opinion is that when those leading a service see it as a community fun time, the failure lies at the feet of the pastor. He sets the standard. But since I do not know the man, this is neither about him or his leadership team.

I wanted to tell you what the guest preacher did.

After he was introduced—and rather poorly, if I may say; if anyone caught his name, I’d be surprised—the man walked to the pulpit, gave a few opening remarks, then had us turn to his text.  Then, he stepped out from behind the pulpit and began a full-scale exhortation.

He had not even read the scripture, but he was already into full preaching mode.

The brother’s preaching was loud and fast, delivered in a staccato style, which he picked up from somebody along the way. And which, no doubt, he and his colleagues consider the right way to preach.

He gave no introduction to the sermon. This man simply stepped off the high diving board into the deep water.

Except there was no deep water.

I’d have loved for there to have been some depth to the sermon. It would have compensated for having to listen to that attack-style of proclamation. But the man never expounded the scripture, never told us why it’s there in the Word, how to implement its instruction, or why that’s a good idea. He never brought in other texts where the same idea is communicated or where variations on the same theme flesh out this truth.

He cited his text a few times, I’ll give him that. But nothing more.