okay... so i'm feeling a little frustrated now. once again i have my preaching class tomorrow at 7:30am. now in the role of a pastor of a church, which i someday hope to be able to fulfill, preaching is by no means a small part of the job. it is one of the times when you are at your most visible, when people you don't have everyday contact with are present, and probably one of the few times that you will have so many of your congregants in one place sitting quietly and not talking back or arguing. so it's big stuff. the frustrating part is that these past three sermons i've had to write have been so frickin' difficult. the first text i was assigned was 1 thessalonians 5.1-11. it talked about the day of the lord coming like a thief in the night, and sudden destruction coming upon people like labor pains come upon a pregnant woman. that was hard enough, but then the next text i was assigned was amos 3.1-8, which is a judgment text against israel. so now i finally get a gospel text, and it turns out it's a parable about the kingdom of heaven, and i'm all excited because this one is going to be easy.... yeah, right. it's a parable about a wedding banquet and a king invites people but no one comes, and then they kill his slaves, so he sends an army to kill them and burn down their houses. so then he sends the slaves out again to just grab whoever they see and bring them to the banquet. that part sounds good. i could preach about the banquet being open to all. i like that idea. but then the king comes to check out the guests, sees a guy not wearing a wedding robe, and has him thrown into the outer darkness where there is much weeping and gnashing of teeth because many are called, and few are chosen. yikes. so after several hours, much typing and deleting and typing and deleting, i have something written. i like it, i think it is a fairly good job, but i'm scared to death of what my classmates and professors will say. i think a big part of my confidence in my call was that i did a good job with the one sermon i had to write for my intro. to preaching class last year. i thought i was the poo because i did a good job. but my first sermon this semester was basically trashed. the second one was a little better. i want to improve, i want to do better, i need to feel that sermon writing is something i can do (i said i was a good sermon writer in my internship application for crying out loud!). right or wrong i'm placing more importance on this class than my hebrew class this semester (hopefully neither of my hebrew profs are reading this right now... of course why would they... they have better things to do... love ya both, by the way ;) so yeah, now instead of getting some sleep so i can be coherent tomorrow i'm sitting here, typing in my blog and obsessing about my lack of confidence in my preaching gifts. did i mention i go for my second appointment with the counselor tomorrow? i'm sure i'll have something interesting to write when i get back from that. if for nothing else than i'm riding for about 2.5 hours in the car with a quite opinionated friend of mine. that'll be food for some writing, i would imagine.
but like i said, i have 7:30 class tomorrow, where i preach, so i should probably think about getting some rest.