Pastoral Ministry

9 Reasons We Preachers Need to Say “Thank You” Today

Post Icon

It’s easy for we preachers to sometimes get focused on only the negatives of ministry. Church members can be headaches, and trying to reach people seems like an uphill battle. On the other hand, we have plenty of reasons to be thankful to be preachers today. Here are some of them:

  1. We have the Word of God in our language. I’m speaking primarily, of course, to my readers who speak English. According to Wycliffe Bible Translators, of the 7,000+ spoken or signed languages, fewer than 10% have full translations of the Bible.* At least 2000 languages have no Bible translation now going on. Those of us who have the full Bible in our language are blessed, indeed.
  2. We have a voice to speak. And, I mean literally. Some years ago, I knew a preacher who faced paralysis of his vocal cords – and that prospect, of course, struck him with fear. All of us have a voice to speak because God grants us the gift of voice. In fact, even those who speak through sign language do so because of God.
  3. We have freedom to speak the Word. No one knows how long that freedom will last, but as of today, we can stand publicly, proclaim the Word of God, and not typically face threats on our lives. Many of our fellow preachers around the world can make no such claim.
  4. We have training opportunities to improve our preaching. Whether it’s a free online course (like these offered at Southeastern Seminary) or a PhD degree in Preaching, we have opportunities that much of the world doesn’t have. Now, it’s even possible in the States to complete doctoral degrees in preaching without leaving our place of ministry.
  5. People trust us with handling the Word and look forward to hearing us. That’s remarkable, actually. God has called us, His people have affirmed us, and we have the privilege of proclaiming His Word. Even when we have church members who create stress in our lives, still others believe in us.
  6. God works through preaching to change lives. We’re deeply blessed to (1) be spokespersons for the eternal God, and (2) see the transforming power of the gospel. Many of us can give testimony of changed lives even when our sermon seemed the weakest.
  7. Our preaching doesn’t have to be perfect. It’s not, anyway, but God doesn’t demand our perfection. In the end, our preaching works because the Word does its work (Isa. 55:11)—not because of our ministry track record, our academic credentials, our charismatic personality, or our preaching skill.
  8. Via the Internet, we can extend our preaching ministry to the nations. The Internet carries its own dangers, but we can now speak to the world from the pulpits where God has placed us. Only God knows how and where He uses our obedience.
  9. Preaching is serious work, but there’s joy in the service. Preaching’s hard, in fact, and it ought to be a bit frightening, in my judgment – but there’s nothing quite like preaching when God’s called you to do it. It will energize you and strengthen you.

Preachers, take some time today to say “thank you” to God. What other reasons would you add to this list?

Editor’s note: This post was originally published at in July 2019.

  • Pastoral Ministry
  • Thankfulness
Chuck Lawless

Director of the Center for Preaching and Pastoral Leadership

Dr. Chuck Lawless currently serves as Professor of Evangelism and Missions, Dean of Doctoral Studies, and Vice-President for Spiritual Formation and Ministry Centers at Southeastern Seminary, in addition to serving as Team Leader for Theological Education Strategists for the International Mission Board. He previously served as a Vice-President for Global Theological Advance for the IMB. Prior to that, he was dean of the Billy Graham School of Missions and Evangelism at Southern Seminary in Louisville, KY, where he also served as Vice President for Academic Programming and the Director of Professional Doctoral Studies. He received a B.S. degree from Cumberland College and M.Div. and Ph.D. degrees from Southern Seminary. He is the author of eight works, including “Membership Matters,” and “Spiritual Warfare,” and has contributed numerous articles to denominational periodicals. He and his wife Pam have been married for over 25 years and reside here in Wake Forest, NC.

More to Explore

Never miss an episode, article, or study.

Sign up for the Center for Preaching and Pastoral Leadership newsletter now!

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.