is this weekend, and I’m in charge. So for the last few days I’ve been bombarded with phone calls or urgent emails relating to some minor crisis about the event. It reached a fever pitch yesterday when I received a message about every ten minutes (or so it seemed).
That’s not a big deal — it’s what you sign on for when you agree to direct a retreat or conference.
However, I also had to preach last night.
Being interrupted every ten minutes does not lend itself to robust sermon preparation. I’m very particular about my sermon preparation routine. I like to research my topic thoroughly, write out what I intend to say word for word, and then rehearse it (at least once, preferably twice). When speaking in the evening, I usually manuscript in the morning and rehearse in the afternoon. That didn’t happen yesterday.
The bottom line is that I walked into last night’s meeting less prepared for a sermon than I have been in years. I felt certain that the message was going to be a flop.
While delivering it, I felt as though I was fumbling for words and rambling incoherently.
But at the end of the evening, one student prayed to receive Christ and another prayed to rededicate herself to Christ.
It was a humbling reminder that it’s not about me and my preparation; it’s about God using broken vessels to achieve His will.