There are times in life when we all deal with ‘reality checks’ which keep us properly grounded. One occurred for me when I was in high school, and was invited to preach the Sunday sermon at church. It was my home church, and I was more excited than apprehensive, because I was already giving serious thought to Christian ministry, and to proclaim the gospel from the pulpit was quite a privilege. I remember working hard on my sermon in the days leading up to the service. I wanted to be well-prepared, so as to be knowledgeable of the content and polished with my delivery.
Sunday morning arrived and I was ready, though through Sunday School and the early portions of the worship service I kept concentrating on my sermon. Then came the moment for me to step to the pulpit and begin. I felt prepared to deliver what I hoped would be a stirring exposition which would inspire people to deeper introspection and commitment. The sermon went well, and I sensed the warmth and appreciation flowing from the congregation. Reinforced by the pastor’s kind words at the end of the service, I was surely interpreting their impressions correctly – or so I thought.
When the service ended, several of my friends and neighbors came forward to thank me for speaking, and to congratulate me on such a fine job. I appreciated all of their remarks, but I was especially anxious to hear the observation of Mr. Ferd Michael, who was a wise, elderly gentleman whom I greatly respected. For a number of reasons, I had admired Mr. Ferd for years, and his opinions always meant a great deal to me. As he approached me that Sunday, I was brimming with anticipation and anxiously awaiting his affirmation when he smiled and said, “Son, I understand that you are planning to be a lawyer. I think you will be a good one.”
Well, life takes its turns, and I did not end up as either a preacher or an attorney. But, some days those professions still have a certain appeal!
On We Go!