i teach often. for the last 14-15 years i have taught every week and more often than not, multiple times a week. the most messages i’ve ever given in one week was 15 (different messages). that’s abnormal, of course, but when you teach all the time you are bound to have times when you just wish you had the chance to do it over.
that was me this weekend at our 9am service. the whole time i was teaching i kept thinking, “this isn’t coming out like i wanted it to.” as i was teaching i realized this isn’t going to be clear. after the service was done i was exhausted. my mind was racing the entire time i was teaching, trying to figure out how to be more clear. it weighs on me emotionally because, as a teacher, i really desire people to gain understanding of a truth. so when it’s not coming out right it drains me.
because i’ve had this happen more than a few times, i’ve learned that there are 3 things i keep in mind to maintain sanity/grounding:
- God works despite us. i have found that many times when i think it was a horrible message, God does things that i would never have expected anyway. the bottom line is God speaks to people through His word regardless of whether or not i said things like i wanted to. at our 11am service i said things much more the way i wanted to and, to be honest, i think it was much more clear. but that doesn’t mean God used it any more or less than the 9am service.
- it’s usually more clear to others than i think. if i’m not saying things the way i planned in my head, i’m the only one that knows that. even though it’s jumbled up in my own mind, nobody else knows that. they don’t know the difference so they are just listening to what i am saying, whereas i’m noticing what i am saying and comparing that with what i planned to say. this makes it seem much less clear to me than it was to others there.
- it’s not about me. when i’ve done this in the past, i’ve often beaten myself up a bit. the truth is i just took myself too seriously. but i’ve learned a little. i’ve learned that is simply my arrogance showing itself in insecurity. so, i’ve had to check that at the stage and when i walk off just move on. it is what it is and God still does what He does.