I worry about what is happening to this generation. It is a generation that doesn’t know books. The ability to read and be moved by the well-written page is slowly slipping away. Today it is all about screens, smartphones, blogs, Social Media, Kindles, and iPads. Through video games, they have raced cars, built civilizations, won wars, destroyed zombies, and killed hundreds. They communicate orally far less than any previous generation, and when they do so, they typically do it with less passion.
Is there hope for this generation to continue to get excited about the church? To be deeply moved by a sermon or a passage in the Bible. Does this generation know what it is like to sing heartily of the blessing of God and even shed a tear when someone finds God? How will God use this generation to fill the pulpits of our churches?
God still calls men and women to the overwhelming responsibility of standing in a church and being the mouthpiece of God. God still uses the preaching of his Word—an oral event—to edify the church, encourage the saints, and engage the lost. Even now a sermon can not seem to be preached without a PowerPoint presentation providing the salient points. Congregants simply can’t be trusted to take their own notes so there are fill in the blank’s puzzles in the bulletin. Are all these devices to keep attention symptoms of shortening attention spans and instant gratification? Do we just forget it all and let the internet do it all. The preachers there seem to have enough passion to hold even a gen Xer’s attention long enough to feel good about themselves.
Preachers don’t give up. Be willing to go the extra mile. Try preaching without props. Get excited about your text. This is the Word of God, not a five-minute podcast. Risk being a fool for Christ.
So to preach the Word, anyone called to fill the holy desk must be willing to get completely out of the comfortable cocoon he’s built in his personality and habits, and recklessly abandon himself to risk being a fool for Christ.