Yesterday I preached at a congregation as a guest speaker. The message has a mix of encouraging and challenging. As usual people after the service stop and thank you for the message. Sometimes is short and sometimes is a longer conversations.
One nice lady approached yesterday and thanked me “It was a nice message”. I smiled in returned, wanted to ask here if any word was more specific, but were other people around and I felt not to continue in that direction.
I have been pondering today regarding that statement “nice message”. It was not the first time I heard that. Mostly from ladies. Maybe it is a ladies thing.
I have challenged lately various congregations regarding the attitude when they come at the service. The attitude needs to be less evaluative and more accepting the word with the purpose to put into practice.
Going to a service to hear something nice, doesn’t need to be the attitude of Christians. I’m not saying that we don;t say nice things, but I believe a good message needs to make the heart think and push towards making decisions to be holier, hungry for God, more lovable towards others, etc.
Maybe churchgoers are very nice people and they are looking for nice things. What disturbs me is the possibility to create an environment, where the preachers and the service attenders have an agreement not to disturb too much each other. Paul said to Timothy that in the last day people will look for people who will offer to their listeners a “pleasant for ears” message. The word of God will be preached not with all the counsel, but only the “nice things”.
Let us be aware of this trap, that pushes preachers of the word to avoid topics that can offend listeners. Let’s be nice to people, but true to the preaching of the word.