Communication has been my craft for most of my life. By the time I was 16 years-old, I was speaking to small or large groups of students about the Word of God. A friend of mine and I were a preacher/singer combo, going around the smaller towns of west Texas to preach “youth-led” worship services. In retrospect, I’ve discovered many things about myself. The most stark reality I face today is how imperfect I am in this craft. Don’t get me wrong, I’m completely at rest where with I’ve been and the opportunities afforded me, and for having the great privilege of telling the Greatest Story Ever Told.
My skill was in simply creating an atmosphere or climate for someone to dive into the Word of God and see themselves as God sees them. Then step back and allow The Holy Spirit to move their hearts and minds toward God in this process. We always offered people an “invitation” to accept God’s grace, forgiveness, and salvation, right there on the spot. We felt “called” to conduct the services in this way because of the gravity of the truth of the message. From time to time I would be in the middle of speaking, when suddenly I would become aware of the words coming out of my mouth, and over the sound system, knowing they were being formed or created on my tongue by God’s Spirit. These were no “unintelligible” utterances, I’m not talking about “speaking in tongues.” I know for certain the words were given for someone in the room who needed to hear those very thoughts.
46 years later now, I yearn for the opportunity to once again speak with this same result. The tools of my craft included the Bible, commentaries, basic education and higher education, going to conferences, and listening to taped recordings of the world’s most recognized and gifted communicators. From each of these resources I would make notes, script a sermon or Bible lesson, honing and trimming the excess or duplication of thoughts, until the day of the presentation. I would then pray a simple prayer: “Lord, please use me one more time, just to speak Your truth, tell Your story – not mine, and trust Your Spirit to accomplish what my words never could.”
Other people, not me, would tell you whether or not I was successful in my craft. My perspective is that I was doing the best I could in each moment I spoke. Early days would clearly be evaluated as not nearly as effective as later years, but by definition I was not fully educated, or as practiced then as later years. The Creator gave me the grand privilege of creating (or planting) a new church congregation in 2006. 11 years later, and now semi-retired from church staff work, God has planted in me the desire to continue my craft of communicating God’s word.
I am literally days away now from publishing my first book. It will be a Bible Study book on the most confusing book in the Bible – Revelation. It is being designed differently than any other book about this material on book shelves today. The book will read more like a script than a history book, in that each paragraph is a single thought (sentence) on which the Bible student can make specific notes. In this way, the individual reader while studying God’s word, can question, make observations, notes, ideas, or write their own conundrums down for later discussion.
Another thing that makes this book different than any other is my approach of avoiding timelines, future dates, or obscure language to interpret these scriptures. I will help the reader who truly wants to understand the meanings, to gain insights that have escaped others. Here is the premise of the whole work:
I believe the Book of Revelation defines the exorbitant length to which God will go to seek and save those who will be saved in this era of human existence. Revelation is 100% about Jesus Christ; and everything in the book is created to reveal Him in new and exciting ways not previously understood in any other book. Revelation is about a loving God, a holy God, and a saving God. Trust me, it’s worth the read.
My prayer is that God will use this book as the vehicle or tool to once again have an audience, and communicate the best I can -The Greatest Story Ever Told.