Jump directly to the Content

Incarnate Preaching

It's not just living your words, it's knowing the lives of those you're speaking to.

The man's 51-year autobiography took more than an hour to read, and it disclosed struggles with addictions, difficult personal relationships, and career disappointments. It included accounts of success and failure, discoveries and disappointments. Mixed in were his ongoing efforts to improve a static-ridden connection with Jesus.

This level of candor in our group is the result of almost two years of weekly meetings. That's how long it has taken us to build an appropriate trust level. Only now is there a willingness to peel back the secretive layers of life and invite the responses of friends.

As this man read his story, I shook my head. Not at the nature of his self-revelations but at how little, before this reading, I really knew him and the issues he was dealing with from day to day. I'm his pastor, for crying out loud, and until this moment I've seen only the surface of his life. And I was supposed to preach to him each week? And make a difference?

As his story continued, ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe to Christianity Today magazine. Subscribers have full digital access to CT Pastors articles.

September
Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
Church Staff Shortages
Church Staff Shortages
From the Magazine
Dallas Willard’s 3 Fears About the Spiritual Formation Movement
Dallas Willard’s 3 Fears About the Spiritual Formation Movement
Could we miss the whole point?
Editor's Pick
In Our Pandemic-Scarred Churches, God Is Making All Things New
In Our Pandemic-Scarred Churches, God Is Making All Things New
A look inside our fall issue of CT Pastors.
close