(The dissemination of encouragement is a powerful thing, especially when you are the recipient. So let's just say I'm feeling empowered today. Yesterday, our congregation was blessed to have Rev. Dr. Ralph Watkins (Associate Professor of Evangelism and Church Growth at Columbia Theological Seminary) and his wife join us in worship. Though I have followed the work of Dr. Watkins for years now, I hadn't been given the opportunity to meet him until about 6 days ago when I was invited to preach at Columbia Seminary. During these brief several days knowing Dr. Watkins what's clear is his sincere love and enthusiasm for God and God's Church and his commendable willingness to encourage young preachers like myself. Evidence of this fact is his recent blog post about his visit to our church in which he shares positive insights about his experience. Because his words encouraged me so much I thought I might share them with you as we continue our endeavor to promote pastoral scholarship and organic Christian intellectualism. Read and Enjoy! Blessings, Billy Michael Honor)
--This blog post is from the site It's The Church facilitated by Rev. Dr. Ralph Watkins
The Power of Great Preaching
As our search for a church home in Atlanta continues this Sunday we visited New Life Presbyterian Church where the Rev. Billy Honor is the pastor. Rev. Honor is young enough to be my son but today he preached like he was my father. I needed a word from God in the worse way. The transition from California to Georgia hasn’t been easy. Sunday is a time for revival and key to any revival is great preaching.
What I learned today was when a pastor / preacher is prepared and they have prayed hard, studied long and put quality work into their sermon it shows. When preaching makes you think and shout simultaneously that is when preaching is at it’s best. Rev. Honor engaged culture and theology with perfect harmony and put the text in conversation with popular culture, personal struggle and God’s vision for God’s people.
When preaching is great it has the potential to grow a people, glorify God and actually grow a church. Preaching with excellence elevates the entire worship experience and moves the congregation in ways that shows the power the Holy Spirit. Rev. Honor is brilliant and he has been well trained. A mature, intelligent God led pastor makes a difference. The future of the church is good hands. Vanessa and I will be seeing New Life Presbyterian Church and Rev. Honor again! Preach preacher.