Maybe you think that that there is a huge bank of sermons somewhere that we vicars, readers and preachers have access to, and we simply select and deliver, after a bit of tweaking. Well, resources like Sermon Central do exist, and you can get sermons linked to specific readings, particularly if you follow the lectionary. But I don’t get the sense any of us at All Saints use them off the peg, even tweaked.
Whatever resources you draw on, there is a non-negotiable need to, first of all, read the passage, let it take hold of you, and read you. You (the preacher) have got to be preached to, exactly as Jess said when she completed her sermon this evening.
While she had been speaking, it struck me how both she, and Sarah this morning, had spoken with enthusiasm about what they had discovered as God spoke to them in their preparations. They had a refreshing, deep and illuminating insight into God’s words, and had the stories to allow us to share their journey, and undertake our own.
There has to be a hunger for God’s words (in the listeners) to enable those preaching to be stretched and to pursue the joy of discovering and sharing the truth. It is good when the written word, the spoken word, and the received word, are all in tune and harmony. Not because it’s simply been re-hashed, but because it’s been discovered anew, in the Holy Spirit, glorifying Jesus, and making the Father known.
Those are the pegs to draw your sermon from.