#1 - How I use the Bible in messages has changed. When I was younger I used the Bible as support for my points. Most of my points were (luckily) Biblical, but I was starting with what I wanted to say and THEN bringing the Word in. More recently the Bible has been my starting point, and I draw my points from the text. The intelligent-sounding way to say this is I've become much more exegetical vs. isogetical in my preaching/speaking.
#2 - I've been talking about the same things for years. It's kind of funny. I've been teaching on the same handful of topics for years, because I feel they are the most relevant to students. They are:
- Who Jesus is, loving Him.
- The Bible, growing in your faith.
- Serving others.
- The importance of Christian community.
- Being different (in a good way - see Rom. 12:2).
#3 - I'm at the point where I can stop writing messages. Seriously. I could just edit and reuse what I have now for the rest of my life. Obviously I'm not going to do this, because my favorite part of YM is communicating God's truth to students in new and relevant ways, but it's nice to know that if things get crazy one week I've got a nice vault of stuff to pull from.
What about you? Have you looked back through your archives lately? What does your teaching/preaching history say about you?
- Tim B.