Years ago, Charlotte and I decided to move to Abilene, Texas, where I would go to graduate school. We could not, however, get the finances together for that. So, we ended up in Dallas for about eight months while we worked and saved for the fall semester.
During that time, I began preaching for a small church outside of Dallas on Sundays. I remember the first Sunday well. We were walking from our car into the church building when a couple I had known for many years saw us. The gentleman, about seventy years of age, said, "Let me encourage you to not speak real long. The old people here don’t like long sermons." I probably don’t have to tell you that it was this gentleman who didn’t like "long" messages. That morning, I began speaking and he was asleep within moments. As he slept during this sermon, his head was cocked to one side and his mouth was open.
In most Sunday assemblies with which I am familiar, there is generally some kind of sermon message, talk, each week. (I know there are exceptions but I do think this is more often true than not.)
A few questions about these messages each week:
- What would you like to see happen during this time?
- What drives you nuts?
- What causes you to really listen?
- When do you hear a message and then leave feeling very blessed?
I am not asking you to respond to each of these questions. Maybe I am just thinking aloud. I am interested in what you think about this. Maybe you could respond to one of these questions.
(I do realize this may be difficult for some. Perhaps you are the person who is usually delivering the messages on Sunday. Maybe you could think about your experiences in listening to other people.)