- Malachi 1:1 (NKJV) The burden of the word of the Lord to Israel by Malachi.
There are many things that can (and should) be delegated; but no matter what you delegate—you can’t delegate responsibility.
Now notice I didn’t say you are responsible for the people you serve. If they are adults, then they are responsible for themselves. You are not God—you can’t “fix” people or save them.
When you get confused on the difference between being responsible to people vs. being responsible for people you are setting yourself (and them) up for disaster. However, being responsible to people is a heavy enough burden (almost overwhelming).
What are responsible to your people for?
Minimally you are responsible to your people to:
- Be prepared. Do not allow lesser things to take you away from being prepared to speak to the real issues of the eternal souls you are responsible too—even if they put pressure on you.
- Pray for them.
- Be truthful.
- To practice what you preach.
- To preach what God demands you preach (not what you want to preach or not what is popular or what your people want you to preach/teach).
Bottom line, preaching/teaching is not an event; it is a lifestyle. Being prepared on Sunday requires six days (minimally). Really, it requires a lifetime; that’s why the longer you live the better your preaching and teaching will be.
So remember tomorrow…delivering your sermon or lesson is not just something that you do and then move on. The people you face will be are eternal souls that are on a crash-collision course with the face of GOD; you are responsible to them! You are a watchman on the wall that will give an account to God, of whom you are ultimately responsible to.
If all this sounds a little “heavy”—remember, that’s why preaching and teaching is often referred to as a burden.
One final word: remember, you don’t have to carry this heavy burden alone—the Holy Spirit is going to help you tomorrow and He will make all the difference. Knowing that gives we preachers and teachers peace and strength–and keeps us sane…mostly :).