Grace For Bad Preaching

I found this story from one of the news articles about the move of God at Asbury encouraging:

It all started on Wednesday, February 8, when Zach Meerkreebs, a volunteer soccer coach who had addressed the student body only twice before, gave an improvised sermon about love.

“Some of you guys have experienced radically poor love,” Meerkreebs, a tattooed 32-year-old with a penchant for kombucha, told the crowd. “Some of you guys have experienced that love in the church. Maybe it’s not violent, maybe it’s not molestation, it’s not taken advantage of—but it feels like someone has pulled a fast one on you.”

Then he uttered the invitation that ignited a movement: “If you need to hear the voice of God—the Father in Heaven who will never love you that way, that is perfect in love, gentle and kind—you come up here and experience his love. Don’t waste this opportunity.”

In a final, kind of corny throwaway line, he said: “I pray that this sits on you guys like an itchy sweater, and you gotta itch, you gotta take care of it.”

Meerkreebs told me he was certain that he had “totally whiffed” the sermon, and immediately got off stage and texted his wife, “Latest stinker. I’ll be home soon.”

Why Students in Kentucky Have Been Praying for 250 Hours (The Free Press)

I don’t know whether his preaching was actually bad that day or not — I haven’t seen the video. But I know he thought it went badly.

And here’s the encouraging thing for preachers: the move of God is not contingent on our rhetorical skills. Do your best to bless God’s people, but don’t despair if you “totally whiff” and lay your “latest stinker.” An amazing outpouring might follow!

Why? Because grace is as fundamental a principle as you can find in Christianity. It is well-known that God offers forgiveness to sinners, freedom for captives, and joy in place of mourning. Moreover, His power is made perfect in our weakness! Why should we be surprised when God pours out His Spirit generously in response to mediocre preaching?

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