A little bit of humour for preachers here. I posted it on my Facebook page today and an old friend from Swiss days commented that he didn’t remember my sermons but he remembered my friendship.
What to make of that?
Two general thoughts:
1: Neither my friend’s comment nor the (tongue in cheek) pie chart should discourage my preaching friends from their task. If you are faithfully preaching the word of God, it is the word of God. You may not be able to measure the incremental ways God has spoken through your preaching to challenge an attitude, to encourage faith, to speak into a decision that someone in your congregation needed to make. You might not remember the details of every cooked meal you have eaten over the past 30 years, but without those meals, you would not be who you are today!
2: At the end of the day you may not turn out to be one of the 21st century’s great pulpiteers. You may preach few sermons whose content proves to be truly memorable, but your people will remember if you were kind. They will remember if you loved them.
By all means prepare well (it’s Wednesday evening as I write this and the countdown to Sunday is underway): you will serve no one by preaching a badly thought out sermon.
But it could be that, once all is said and done, and you have done preaching, you will be remembered more for the way you related to people than for the splendour of your expositional skill!