Micah 2:6, describes poetically, prophetically, psychologically what all preachers grapple with from time to time…
Do I say it?
Here in this passage Micah is condemning the preachers who have chosen not to say it and have begun to say what will be accepted by their hearers.
The scary thing is I know how they got there, and I live thousands of years later.
The tension for a speaker is you know the people you speak to on a weekly basis. You know their struggles, you know their pains, you know what they like and what they do not like… even if they do not tell you. It is just something a shepherd knows and when a text has a point in it you know will not be received well… what do you do?
Do you say it?
Because you know if you do… conversations behind your back, emails, Facebook postings, and phone calls will ensue. And they will say things about you, your family, and your intentions that you would never say about them. You can feel it when people are “having you for lunch. The pain that comes as a result of speaking the truth is heavy, so heavy it makes you wonder…
should I say it?
I plan my sermons a year out… this Sunday’s text has a point in it that has created a “Do I Say It” moment.
No one likes an uncomfortable room.
No God fearing preacher lives for the moment where He says something that strikes such a cord that it creates tension in the room.
But sometimes things must be said… because that is what God wants for that given day. So here are a few guiding points for times such as this…
1. Make sure it is God and not You. – When you say it, the accusation that will come is “it was you and not God”, so inside you must believe without any doubt that it was God who lead you to that point and not your own feelings.
2. The text must say it. It must be something that is obvious in the story or passage you are preaching. Sometimes the text is all you have to stand on… and it is more than enough.
3. Do not say more than what needs to be said. Do not go on a tangent. Most tangents are yours and not God’s… remember that and be aware of it.
4. Say it with love not with hate. Say it with Love not hate. Say it with LOVE not hate.
5. Say it with Love to everyone that is in the room… focus on everyone in the room… preach to the crowd not to the person. The audience on that day is who God has given you to speak to.
5. Expect that person to be there and deal with the emotions that come with that thought before you get to church. Do not point what you have to say at the individual… that is what the Holy Spirit is for and when He works they are going to feel like you have focused on them anyway and will tell you as such. But remember when that happens it is really a sign that they are convicted and they are rejecting that conviction by placing it all on you.
6. Pray and then pray some more…. and then pray again. You can never do too much of that.
So… Do you say it?
Yes… if it is truly a word from God.