Monday. The day after many of us poured out our hearts and souls in preaching to others…and the beginning of the countdown before we do it all over again in six days.
Psalm 62 has some valuable insight for preachers. Many of us will labor physically and mentally throughout this week in preparation to encourage and challenge others on Sunday. Our message will be that of David in Psalm 62:8:
________________Trust in him at all times, O people;
_____________________pour out your heart before him;
_____________________God is a refuge for us.
I find it interesting, however, what David wrote just before Psalm 62:8. In Psalm 62:5-7, David preaches to his own soul.
________________For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence,
_____________________for my hope is from him.
________________He only is my rock and my salvation,
_____________________my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
________________On God rests my salvation and my glory;
_____________________my mighty rock, my refuge is God.
That’s a valuable lesson I need to remember each Monday morning—before I preach to others, I need to preach to my own soul! I am called to live Psalm 62:5-7 before I preach Psalm 62:8. I will be best prepared for Sunday if I make the best use of my time over the next six days:
- Centering my focus on God above all others and all things.
- Paying more attention to my soul than my body.
- Taking the time to deliberately wait and meditate in silence.
- Praising God as my only rock.
- Rejoicing in the assurance of my salvation.
- Fortifying the fortress of my faith in him.
- Asking for his wisdom and strength so that I might not be shaken.
- Expressing my ongoing and desperate need for his continued mercy and grace.
- Seeking his glory above my own.
- Determining to be steadfast and immovable as I build on the mighty rock.
- Remembering that my flesh and my heart may fail, but God is my unfailing refuge.
Preaching to others is a frighteningly wonderful work of service. “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” (Romans 10:15). If you are granted the opportunity to do so six days from today, give it your all! But do more than simply prepare your material. Prepare yourself to preach. Before you preach to others, spend significant time in preaching to your own soul.
“It is easier to declaim like an orator against a thousand sins in others than to mortify one sin in ourselves; to be more industrious in our pulpits than in our closets; to preach twenty sermons to our people than one to our own hearts.” (John Flavel)