…so that no one may boast before him.
1 Corinthians 1:29
I would like to share a testimony to how good God is! In my role at Church and in leading a youth group, I often have the opportunity to preach or to share the gospel with various folk.
It’s a great privilege to be asked and to be given the opportunity and I usually jump at the chance to open up the bible and help others to see and understand it.
Though I’ve often found that I come under a great deal of pressure leading up to these opportunities. Whether it’s my own doing as I understand the seriousness and responsibility it is to preach; or whether it is my own physical weakness or nerves or stress; or whether it is something external and I’m being attacked by the enemy of the truth… whatever the cause, it can be draining and exhausting – and more and more so, the closer it gets to the moment.
At times I wonder why I accept invitations to preach, why go through the agonising process? Other times I see the results of preaching and am so thrilled and in awe at the power of God to work in people’s minds and hearts – that it is a joy to be a small tool in that process.
By nature I am quite a weak speaker. Talk to me in the street and I’ll mumble and stutter over my words; I won’t be able to put proper sentences together; there seems to be a big brick wall between the thoughts in my brain and the path they go down to my mouth! I also seem to have a weak voice/throat. So often my mouth will just dry up and I wouldn’t be able to speak for more than a few minutes before having to gulp down gallons of water!
But this testimony is to share that in spite of my weaknesses and shortcomings, there hasn’t been a time when I’ve preached, that God hasn’t enabled me to talk clearly, confidently and with conviction.
Twice this week, I’ve had occasions to preach, and prior to them both I’ve been visibly nervous and uncertain. But as I stand up to speak, God has empowered me in a very noticeable way! Hallelujah.
My wife will see it the most… she knows when I am nervous and unsettled, (however much I try to hide it). But then she is just as surprised at the transformation as I stand up to speak and God enables me to open my mouth!
So praise God that he is able to use such fragile and weak things to be involved in his work.
Perhaps if I was strong and confident, I wouldn’t have to depend on God – then what use would I be? I’d just be another clanging cymbal in the world, clamouring for attention, with my own message to sell.