This week I was offered an opportunity to preach at my home congregation. No date was set, and really the idea was just thrown out there in the e-mail, but it’s still a little intimidating for me. I have never preached before. I’ve given campfire talks, which are alright but much less formal, and I’ve given one “talk” at a Sunday evening worship service at Luther College called FOCUS, which was a wonderful experience and probably the closest I’ve come to the pulpit. The idea of reaching excites me. Although I haven’t taken the Preaching class yet at LSTC, I am still learning a lot of things by observation.
I am very fortunate to be able to attend chapel up to four times a week and listen to a variety of ways to interpret and communicate the gospel to others. I am also fortunate to participate in Greek Pericopes with Dr. Edgar Krentz every Monday (that I can make) where we translate the New Testament readings for the week and sometimes take a look at the Septuagint translation of the First Reading as well. At both of these occasions, I challenge myself and ask how I could preach on one of the subjects within the texts? Most of the time, my gut is wrong (yes, even post-appendectomy). Dr. Krentz usually will preface how he would go about that Sunday with, “It is tempting to preach on this…(insert what I was thinking here)…but I wouldn’t for this reason”. Ooops.
I’m looking forward to completing the Preaching class next year so I can get over some of these concerns about how to “properly” preach within the Lutheran church. I’ve heard some scary stories about first sermons and those have me a little nervous, but I am still very excited for my first preaching opportunity coming up soon.