The Gospel for a Weary Pastor on Monday Morning

Yesterday, you preached God’s Word to God’s people – His Law and His Gospel.  You administered the sacrament of the body and blood of Christ.  You ministered in prayer.  And this morning, you feel like a failure.  Empty.  Like a Monday morning agnostic – not knowing whether your efforts were all in vain.  Feeling like they probably were.

Remember the Law you preached?  It preaches to you, too.  You are worse than you think.  Why did you preach yesterday?  For the praise of men?  To build up your reputation as a preacher?  To build yourself up?  To get “likes” on your Facebook link?  Your motives are mixed.  Your preaching is flawed.  And if God were to judge you based on your performance yesterday, preacher – you would be toast.

Remember the Gospel you preached?  It preaches to you, too.  You are more loved and forgiven than you believe.  You do not preach for your Father’s approval – you already have it in Christ.  100%.  You are justified.  Jesus is your righteousness.  All your failures and flaws yesterday?  Forgiven.  Your mixed motives?  Forgiven.  And Jesus took your weak, imperfect efforts – and by His Spirit applied His Word to His people.  It’s HIS sin-forgiving, life-giving, sanctifying Word, after all.  Not yours.  And that, too, is good news.

Yes, your preaching yesterday was shot through with you and your weakness and sin.  But remember, you have a Mediator.  Jesus took your imperfect works of ministry, and presented them in His Name, to His Father.  To Your Father.  Through His blood.  All of you – your sinful contribution – is washed away.  All that is left is Jesus, and His pure Word.  You know what your Father thinks of your preaching yesterday?  “Well done, My good and faithful servant!  You are My forgiven, adopted son whom I love.  With you I am well-pleased, because I see and accept you and all your works – even your preaching – in My Well-Beloved Son.  Carry on, My dear child, in His Name.”

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