Some folks place the progress of their spiritual journey in the hands of a minister who stands before them on any given Sunday morning. They depend on his words to guide them. I realized several years ago that if I want my journey to progress past my Sunday afternoon nap, I must preach to myself and often. While the words of a minister are good and important and even needed they don’t always do as good a job as when I preach to myself. But that is another post for another day.
This morning was just such a day when I needed a sermon, a good preaching to, perhaps even a trip to the woodshed as the old folks say. I did not sweet talk myself, nor did I try to reason through excuses. I was not gentle at all.
“Self, I said, you have got to get a grip on things.”
“Self, there is no excuse for your bad mood, for your willingness to just give up.”
I reminded my tired self that everyone else is tired too. I pointed out to my disappointed self that expectations breed disappointments and accepting things and people for who and what they are will help protect my heart. I sternly told myself that quitting was not an option, that I have been through harder times than this and I was being a baby. I told myself that this was just a season, a few days in the grand scheme of life and today is not forever.
A strong sermon for a Sunday morning run.
I rounded the corner to see a brilliant sunrise
In that moment, I slowed to a walk and God finished up the sermon in a flourish of a cool September breeze mixed with the bright morning sunshine across my face.
“Child, I am all you need, more than enough.”
And my alter was a well worn fence post.
The doxology was the geese overhead.
Sometimes you just need to preach to yourself.