An Audience of One
Last week I had an incredible opportunity to preach to a large group of people. Now, before I go any further, I know it shouldn’t matter if we are speaking to 10 people or 10,000, because we should be preaching to please Christ. But it does make a difference. Here’s why.
I have preached in a church where only 11 people showed up, and that’s including my wife and daughter, and I have preached regularly to a church of 200 to 300 people. But when I stood in front of a crowd of thousands, the weight of responsibility I felt was huge. I was nervous, not because of the crowd, but because of the opportunity and responsibility of proclaiming Christ to that many people at one time. In Luke 12:48, we see where much is given, much is required. I take very seriously the responsibility of correctly teaching and interpreting scripture when I teach (2 Timothy 2:15), and I believe God is pleased when we preach with urgency and boldness.
I have joked that the reason I was asked to speak was that the organizers didn’t have the money to bring in a real ‘speaker’, but down deep I hope that God has honored the fact that I take my responsibility seriously. Whether preaching to 10 or 3500, I know who my real audience is, an audience of one.