An Adventure In Not Preaching

So yesterday I didn’t preach.

You might think that odd, since the Sunday before Christmas Eve is historically one of the most well-attended of the year. Which is precisely why I didn’t preach.

I thought it was an extraordinarily important time for the church to hear from another voice on our leadership (more on that in a moment).

So instead of preaching, I wore a purple shirt.


People in purple shirts are volunteers in our Children’s Ministry. At 8:30, I served the dual role of Large Group Storyteller and then leader of a small group of first & second graders.

I have to say . . . it was a blast.

They came up with their own idea to put on a Christmas story puppet show, using some figures we made in craft time. I couldn’t say no to that.

Then I was surrounded by their enthusiasm, peppered with their questions, and treated to the details of their lives. Through it all, we focused on the Bottom Line for yesterday’s lesson: God gave us the greatest (or “bestest” as one of them said) gift when he gave us Jesus.

I was able to join the “main service” for our 10:00 hour. As I said earlier, I thought the church needed to hear a complementary voice on this Sunday — in this case, John Pavlovitz, our Student & Family Pastor.

John was at his provocative, witty, and insightful best yesterday. He has a rare gift with wordsmithing, and so I almost always take notes when he speaks. Here’s some of what I got from his talk:

We would worship Jesus more if we weren’t so busy trying to compete with him.

Helping you to believe in yourself is the job of Disney or Oprah; my job is to help you believe in the light.

Be content to be the moon and not the sun.

You are the light of the world, but you’re not THAT light.