Last Thursday, I had a conversation at lunch with someone from our church. This person is very much a friend and supporter of Dan's ministry at Stetson. So, what I'm about to share was not evil spirited criticism. She was a friend sharing her opinion. (To us and not about us which I always appreciate!) She said "tell Dan he completely lost me last night. I didn't get anything out of his sermon because it was over my head. It just didn't relate."
I missed that
sermon because I was home with a sick child. I thought about it over
the rest of the day and felt a little discouraged. Not because she
voiced her opinion, but just because things have been especially hard
lately. It just seemed like another blow. It wasn't the kind of blow
that crushes you because it did come from a friend. But, just the kind
of blow that makes you wonder if what you are doing matters. The kind
that makes you question if you are reaching people.
Dan had a 16
hour day that day so I didn't get to even talk to him to tell him what
she said. I don't always share all criticism with him but I was curious
what his message the night before was about. So, I planned to tell him
about it when he got home late Thursday night.
4:30 that same day, I ended up in a place with another church member.
As we sat and chatted, he said "Is Dan coming to meet you?" I told him
that Dan had meetings until late that night and he wouldn't be meeting
us. Then, what he said next has had me thinking/chuckling/shaking my
head since then. He said "Well, tell him his sermon last night was
fantastic. It was probably one of the best I've heard from him. He
spoke with such passion and clarity. And, the knowledge he exhibited
just blew my mind! I've thought about it since he preached last night.
It was really great. It taught me a lot."
Are you kidding me?
The same sermon was one of Dan's worst to one person and one of his
best to another! It totally related to one man and didn't relate at all
to one lady. One left discouraged and one left encouraged.
perils of church life. It is truly impossible to please everyone. So,
my prayer is that Dan does what God has called him to do and not what
men want. I ask God each day to give him great wisdom, ability to
clearly hear God's voice, to keep his mind and heart pure and focused on
Him. I know that God has great plans for Dan. I know that he can
accomplish so much through him, even on the days that some people think
they just heard his worst ever sermon.