Tuesday, December 16, 2008

For all of us who speak...


Lately I have been doing a very long teaching series in my Sunday School class on apologetics. It didn't start out this way quite honestly (I only intended the series to be a few weeks long) but it has mushroomed into more and everyone seems to be just absolutely loving it. As it has progressed, I have delved into much deeper study myself of what I believe and why. I have rolled it over and over in my mind countless times, honed it, and found new ways to express it to those I teach. Some fascinating class discussions have ensued. I told them I don't know when we'll ever get off of this topic...we'll just keep it going as long as we're still riding the wave.

I was doing my devotional in My Utmost for His Highest and came across the following this week and it so powerfully described what has been happening more in me as I study to prepare. I think this is a great reminder from the author, to those of us who communicate publicly. What a challenge!

Oswald Chambers, in My Utmost for His Highest:

If you cannot express yourself well on each of your beliefs, work and study until you can. If you don’t, other people may miss out on the blessings that come from knowing the truth. Strive to re-express a truth of God to yourself clearly and understandably, and God will use that same explanation when you share it with someone else.

But you must be willing to go through God’s winepress where the grapes are crushed. You must struggle, experiment, and rehearse your words to express God’s truth clearly. Then the time will come when that very expression will become God’s wine of strength to someone else. But if you are not diligent and say, "I’m not going to study and struggle to express this truth in my own words; I’ll just borrow my words from someone else," then the words will be of no value to you or to others. Try to state to yourself what you believe to be the absolute truth of God, and you will be allowing God the opportunity to pass it on through you to someone else.

Always make it a practice to stir your own mind thoroughly to think through what you have easily believed. Your position is not really yours until you make it yours through suffering and study. The author or speaker from whom you learn the most is not the one who teaches you something you didn’t know before, but the one who helps you take a truth with which you have quietly struggled, give it expression, and speak
it clearly and boldly.

2 comments:

Deborah said...

if i had to tell you how much your blog means to me in this time that I have been in such a very deep hole words could never ever tell you... I signed up for your cup of coffee aswell...dear Deanna than you for your unfailing love and support that we all receive by just reading your blog... the times when you have put funny things on made the tears vanish and but a smile on my face...my dear dolla thank you for been the pastor we all want...now i just need to find one in SA so happy hunnting for a pastor couple...love to you and your whole family..and happy birthdays to any of your kiddies I have missed in my season of darkness.

Aaron said...

I tend to be lazy. This is a good reminder to be diligent for our own growth as well as helping others grow. So many times I am caught with not much to say or can't say it the way I want to.
Thank you for a great quote!