Nevertheless on some points I have written to you rather boldly by way of reminder, because of the grace given me by God…
Before I went to Divinity School, a mentor told me that a preacher really only has about six or seven sermons.
I laughed and thought, "That can't be right." Turns out, she was.
Sure, many of us preacher-types preach upwards of fifty or more times each year. But if you listen closely, you’ll hear the same sermons — just with different anecdotes and examples, different data points and histories, different intros and emphases. But, spoiler alert, it’s often the same sermon.
At least for me, these six or seven sermons that I preach represent my core values and beliefs as a follower of Jesus. They offer a glimpse into what I think is most important along the way. They reveal the God I’ve come to know and the hope I have for you, dear friend, and for this world.
It’s good news, and it bears repeating. Even if we've heard it before.
One of my heroes, Bono, wrote, “I preach what I need to hear.” Sunday in and Sunday out, I've found this maxim to be true. Because the six or seven sermons I preach are just as much for me as they are for you. You see, I have a terrible memory, and I’m also a little stubborn. (Tell me I'm not the only one.) So I need to hear this good news again and again and again.
I figure if I need it that much, then you might, too.
So, like Paul, I write to you by way of reminder.