“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time; casting all your care upon him, for he careth for you.” -1 Peter 5:6-7
Those are the words I used to read about 30 seconds before I would preach. Now they ring in my heart naturally. It has been said that people place the fear of public speaking right up there with death! For me, confidence does not come naturally and yet I have grown to enjoy and thrive in speaking from my pulpit every week. The source of my confidence, however, may surprise you. I don’t use public speaking gimicks or tricks. I don’t picture everyone in their underwear (I’m wondering how it is that so many people actually recommend this???). I simply visualize two things: one is my big God, and the other is an audience that needs what I have to say.
You see, preaching is the delivery of God’s words through a human personality. I came to grips with my inability to present God’s message on my own a long time ago. If left up to me, I’d stumble and bumble through an eight minute presentation, then go hide somewhere in shame. But when I realize that God is up to something great within the hearts of my listeners, I can’t wait to share what He’s given me in the study. It’s actually thrilling to watch Him work.
My confidence is rooted first of all in the identity of my God – He’s big, audacious, and radically committed to seeing His truth spread throughout all the world for His own glory. Second, my confidence is rooted in my identity as His child, His called Ambassador, His earthly spokesperson, His mouthpiece. God never calls the qualified, He qualifies the called. What is the source of your confidence in life? For me, it’s the fact that I’m called and the One who called me backs me up! He’s ready any moment to rescue me if I’m ready any moment to speak for Him. Are you ready to live in total God-confidence?