Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: At the Pulpit (11/15/07)
TITLE: Can Any Believer Preach A Message To A Local Congregation?
By Diana Wade
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Eventually, we ended up in a fellowship that had started in the basement of a home,that had about 15 members.
The services were about as different as day and night from the ones in New Orleans. Here, everyone was encouraged to participate in the meetings, whether it be giving some scripture, praying for someone, or teaching from the Bible.
Content to sit and learn, as we were new Christians, so standing behind a pulpit to bring a message wasn't even in our remotest thoughts. But the pastor thought differently. One day she called me at home and asked if I would prayerfully consider bringing the message for the midweek service. She felt the Lord wanted her to ask me to do so. I was terrified. The only ones who ever preached in any church I'd ever been in were seminary trained. Certainly not a lay person. So I prayed. And felt strongly the Lord did want me to bring a message,and I had my nose in my Bible for a week, and butterflies in my stomach. When the evening came for me to teach, I felt sick to my stomach, and thought for sure I could not go through with it. But no one else was prepared, so I went up, with knees knocking and gave what I had. To this day I don't remember what my topic was, but from that time on, I began to minister or teach on a fairly regular basis.
I began to see that most Christians can share, or preach or teach from time to time, and although not everyone has a regular pulpit ministry, a pastor needs to be sensitive and open to allow the Holy Spirit the freedom to use "whosoever will" during a service,as long as that "whosoever" is committed Christian, not given to strange doctrine or practices. If they do not, the body of Christ misses out on a blessing. Too often the Holy Spirit is stifled in services, because a pastor simply has to preach a message every meeting. By the pastor encouraging and helping the members of the body find their place and calling, relieves some of the burden off him or her. And who knows? Maybe there's
another DL Moody or Billy Graham in their midst!
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