Monday, January 19, 2015

Public Speaking Or Death?

Sheryl and I diving this summer.
It's difficult to preach underwater.
The first job I ever wanted was "Diver Man" because I used to watch Jacques Cousteau on television. Although I do scuba dive occasionally, I didn't make a career out of it.

I also wanted to be a garbage man because the trash trucks were so cool.

Other jobs I considered before ministry were anthropologist, psychiatrist, police detective and computer programmer just to name a few.  

I flirted briefly with being a preacher as a child because I thought it would be a sure ticket to heaven.  However, when I started thinking about coming up and delivering a speech on a weekly basis, I thought there had to be better jobs available!  Most studies show that people actually fear public speaking more than dying!  

Then as a freshman in high school, we had to give oral reports in Spanish class over our projects.  Mine was a comparative study of the Aztec and Mayan cultures (remember that anthropology?).  I was very interested in the subject and so speaking on it came pretty easily.  I did so well that Senora Reynolds asked me to speak to her other classes as well.  I never did take her up on that - I thought, now wait a minute, here!  It was fine for my class but let's not get carried away!

Because I did well on this speech, I under-prepared for another speech my senior year and blew it.  That put me back in the "no way" category for preacher.  It took preaching an actual sermon to get over the hump of the fear of being in the pulpit. 

We often don’t realize what we are capable of until presented with the opportunity.  Some of us dive right in while others test the waters with our toes.  Many decide that it is too cold to make the effort.

This Sunday's lectionary reading is Mark 1:14-20 where Jesus calls the disciples.  They were fishermen at the time and they drop everything to follow this traveling rabbi.  Did you ever wonder what their parents thought about this decision?

What do you do if God calls you to do something?  Could you be happy doing anything else?

I believe that all Christians are called to some form of service by the very fact of their baptism.  It is a washing of sin but it is also a call upon our lives.  It marks us as different - just how different may be up to your call!

In Christ,


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