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The phone rang at 10:00 Sunday morning. Generally I would have long since been at the church. But this Sunday morning I was caring for our sick son while my wife taught her Sunday school class. Our game plan was for her to finish early and come home. Then I would rush to church for the morning service.

The call was from one of our lay leaders at the church.

"Steve, the district superintendent just walked in. He mentioned he was in the area and wanted to worship with us today. Did you know he was coming?"

"No, I sure didn't," I replied "I'll be there shortly."

'Oh no,' I thought. 'What a lousy day for the district superintendent to show up.'

My thought raced ahead to my message. I had some misgivings about my sermon. Besides my Sunday rhythm being thrown off by a sick child, the previous week had been filled with interruptions, meetings, and necessary paperwork. The time I'd planned to fine-tune my sermon had vaporized. Now I faced preaching a "best I could with the time I had" sermon with the ...

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From Issue:Winter 1994: Preaching
July/August
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