When was the last time you saw a sermon walking? The Chicago crowd was expectant. Reporters stood with cameras ready; officials waited with carefully crafted greetings. The train pulled to a stop and he stepped out—a giant of a man, six-feet, four inches tall with bushy hair and a large mustache. Cameras flashed! Important bureaucrats rushed forward with outstretched hands. There was a buzz in the crowd.
The man was appreciative, but as his eyes drifted over the crowd he asked if he might be excused for a moment. He walked briskly through the gathered onlookers until he reached her—an elderly black woman who was struggling with her bags. He picked up her belongings, escorted her to the bus she was taking, wished her a good day, and then returned. “Sorry to have kept you waiting.” he said.
The man was Albert Schweitzer, winner of the 1952 Nobel Peace Prize and famous missionary doctor. Schweitzer spent a lifetime helping the poorest of poor in Africa. Stunned at Schweitzer’s graciousness, one of the members of the reception committee commented to a reporter: “That’s the first time I ever saw a sermon walking.”
It may be the pastor’s job to prepare the Sunday message, but we are all called to live it.
For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (2 Peter 1:5-11 ESV)
The world is longing to see sermons walking. How is the message crafted? Peter reminds us that a life of love is written with God’s pen of forgiveness. Remembering what Christ has done for us enables us to stand with uncompromising resolve for him. Living sermons do not have to be profound. Like Schweitzer, at times all it takes is lending a helping hand or being patient and polite in moments of haste and hurry. All of us will take a walk today, but will we be sermons walking?
MY PRAYER: Lord, thank you for cleansing me from my sins. Let me never forget it. Help me supplement my faith with those characteristics that make me a sermon walking. Speak your message of love through me today.
Copyright © 2010 Tommy Kiedis