I had been before back in March to take some mid-week Bible Studies in Haggai, but this was the first time I had preached on a Sunday. It is a lovely fellowship – very warm and friendly, full of godly people who care about the gospel and the glory of Christ. I preached in Matthew 7:21-23 in the morning, warning against vacuous profession of faith and that giftedness was no ticket to entry to the kingdom, but that doing the work of believing in the One sent was.
The service was followed by a fellowship lunch – yum.
In the afternoon we were looked after by Faqir and Margaret. We had a good time of fellowship.
In the evening I preached on John 12:1-8. I blogged on this a couple of days ago, so you know the thrust of my thinking. I had the rather strange event of coming to the end of my notes rather abruptly and not really finishing very clearly. Though in my prep it was clear enough, something strange happened in the delivery. This has happened before. Though there are practical lessons to learn from this, I was immediately reminded that preaching is a spiritual activity, an act of trust, where God chooses to use weak earthen vessels for His glory alone. Sometimes the preacher needs to be humbled because he relies upon his methods.
Nevertheless, I am encouraged.
How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity! (Ps. 133:1, NIV)