The Heart of a Preacher

“The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” Luke 6:45

The proclamation of God’s word and how it tells of Christ is vital to any and all preaching in our churches. Certainly there are talented men faithfully preaching the word but beyond talent or an ability to capture the attention of an audience, I think the heart of the preacher will most assuredly be the defining element of the proclamation. This week I had the joy of sitting under my boss’ preaching and it was his heart that delivered the gospel better than a well placed joke or prop.

Dave Hilliard doesn’t preach much. He recognizes that his gifts are more in the sheparding realm but he is open to being used by the Spirit and grown by the Spirit as he pursues things outside his typical strengths. A few times a year then Pastor Hilliard (who is the Elder managing our Adult Ministry Team) preaches and in the two sermons I have heard I recognize a clear gospel but also a heart that must proclaim the truth. It is with humility and life experience that he talks of mercy and a repentant heart. Recently I have been talking a lot about gospel compulsion, the truth of response to the gospel in a way that our proclamation and obedience is something we have to do, and I felt like this week’s sermon was exactly that for Pastor Hilliard. He studied the text for months preparing for a mission to Haiti and from that study the Lord gave him a word on mercy and the Lord’s opposition to self-satisfaction that had to get out. From the abundance of what God was doing in his heart, he preached.

As I determine now in my early days of preaching what I want to define my presentation; more than anything, like Pastor Hilliard, I want it to be my heart.

Listen to his sermon here.

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