Each Sunday I cannot wait to hear what I have to say! I know.....that sounds terribly egotistical. Well while I am not above such, it isn't intended in the statement. I mean I really believe God works with me to the extent He holds back a lot of His good stuff until we are up there preaching. He and I co-preach and we've done it for years. Should anyone think this to be rather radical, I would remind you that God is the One who said we labor together...II Cor. 6:1.
When I first began to preach I took the baton from Him and ran my own independent race. The messages were shallow as well as distracting. The Word continues to express His desire that we team-teach. For years now, I have studied more intensely. The difference is I learn with an ear for His input.
Today I have a message which is quite different in form than my usual three or four biblical texts and subsequent points. I'm slightly nervous about me....but not about Him. I would never have thought of such a presentation on my own. This causes fleshly nervousness and spiritual excitement.
The joy I find in preaching escalates week by week. He is so sharp I feel I am just getting started. God has groomed me to understand that on my own I am an embarrassment to the church and to myself. With Him, though, I am an acceptable and useful vessel. Success is not dependent upon my personality. It is totally dependent upon the truth that in all we try to do God participates.