Layfetta: Like so many others, our children returned to school recently. I dropped them off, then drove to my placement church in absolute silence. Silence in the car for the first time in six weeks. Well, I’m won’t lie, it was kind of… nice!
I smiled along my merry way. It was not long before I started wondering what they were doing and how Reception class was going for our four year old daughter. She had been doodling on paper all summer in preparation for the “important work” she had to do in Mrs J’s class.
My mind then rested firmly on my year ahead and the work I have in store. This will be my final year at St Mellitus College, North West. Conversations about curacy have begun and God has most certainly got His feet firmly on the pedals driving me forward.
I evaluate where I am up to, in terms of what I have learnt and how competent I feel. Not very. I think I felt more competent last year as I was about to begin 😊. My last sermon took five drafts before I felt at peace. Surely this is not supposed to be the case? “I should be churning them out a lot more quickly”, I thought to myself, not more slowly.
This might have something to do with being more aware of what a good sermon should contain, who knows. Interestingly enough, as I experience turmoil within, members of the congregation have begun saying ‘well done’ and sending me emails about how blessed they were by my sermon, how God spoke to them, and more shockingly, comments on how I am growing in confidence and ‘presence’.
I want to tell them, I have done very little other than pray “Help!” every day. I have come to realise that I should never act without being led, no matter how tempting. How do I know I am being led? Inner peace. The sermon that I took for a spin five times was on Joy. A few days later I was listening to my Bible in a Year App on my phone, by a very well-known pastor, and he had plagiarised my sermon! Well, not really, he simply said nearly the exact same things I had preached on. It gave me comfort, as though God was confirming something in me. Reassuring me that I did hear from Him.
The truth is, even if his comments were different, I still trust that the inner peace that God rests inside of me is sufficient. I won’t always receive approval from others or confirmation from an App. Doing what He says in His word, or what He drops in my spirit, that is my only desire. To hear and be obedient to my one and only Lord Jesus.
Like my daughter with her bit of paper and a pen, I see this as “important work”, and if it takes me five drafts to phrase what He is trying to say to His church, then I consider it a great joy and a privilege. It does get easier, right? 😊