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Your Toughest Audience

Preaching to Yourself

Joe Thorn talks to himself, and he thinks you should do the same. In his book Note to Self, Thorn, pastor of Redeemer Fellowship in St. Charles, Illinois, models what he believes is an overlooked practice: "the discipline of preaching to yourself." We talked to Thorn about preaching to yourself, preaching to others, and how the two practices are related.

What do you mean by "preaching to yourself"?

Preaching to ourselves is personally pressing the Word of God upon our hearts and lives with the aim of glorifying and enjoying God. The consequences of this should be conviction of sin, encouragement in the gospel, and ongoing transformation.

There's been a lot of talk recently about "preaching the gospel to ourselves," but it isn't anything new. I first ran across the idea years ago in Puritan literature. Thomas Manton argued that we preach to ourselves in the act of prayer, saying prayer "is a preaching to ourselves in God's hearing. We speak to God to warm ourselves, not for his information, ...

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