If you are preaching today, it is tempting to be caught up in your own world. Concerned about your presentation, the details of the sermon, even the peripheral details that you didn’t delegate to someone more passionate about them. But know this – today’s sermon may be the last some of those people ever hear.
The tired teenager who is gaining the freedom to not have to come to church, but has not yet gained a sense of need for church. Today may be their last. The person who’s been coming for a while, but only fits in on the outside, by dressing right, yet on the inside is wracked with doubts and is tired of pretending. Today may be their last. The couple whose marriage is seconds away from complete train wreck and can’t keep up the show any longer. Today may be their last. The guy struggling with significant temptation who feels like he’ll cave in any day, but is currently painfully unaware of the waves of guilt that will follow. Today may be his last.
Today may be the last time some people in your congregation hear you preach. It may be their last sermon, their last Sunday morning at church. We’ve all heard evangelistic messages that point out the urgency of the occasion. “You may step out of here and be hit by a bus. Do not delay!” Let’s turn that urgency on ourselves for a moment. Some of them may die before next Sunday. But there are dozens of other reasons why you may not see them again. The reasons are important, but so is this sermon. How much more direct should it be? How much more relevant? How much more real should you be? How much more urgent?
This may be their last. Preach in a way that will make this sermon count.