The Expository Files


Top Ten Nevers For Preachers


1. Never build your self-esteem on hopes of spectacular, dramatic work, that elicits the applause of men. 99% of the good you do is done gradually, over time, and much is uncelebrated.

2. Never think of generic, anonymous audiences. You deliver the Word to people. They are individuals with unique experience and personality.

3. Never congratulate yourself. Be satisfied when your work justifies it, but never congratulate yourself, privately or publicly.

4. Never let your office become a hiding place; there are people outside your office. That's usually where the real work is.

5. Never get in the middle of a controversy because it is intriguing; get involved when, according to your responsibility to God, it is necessary.

6. Never build your ambition and pride based on meeting, lecture invitations. If that happens, do good work, but then come home - get back into your local work, and take the garbage out.

7. Never argue with brethren about money. Nobody wins those arguments.

8. Never attempt any work, any crisis, any sermon or anything, without prayer.

9. Never put your wife and kids off to "build up your career."

10. Never finish a Sunday's work without reflection on what you need to do better. But don't beat yourself up; get beyond your blunders and do better. {Just ask me, I have vast experience with blunders.}

By Warren E. Berkley
The Front Page
From Expository Files 14.5; May 2007