Whenever I have special speaking engagements on the horizon, I either develop twitches, fatigue, or an indulgence for chocolate. Throughout the morning I worked on a two-day lesson for Momentum students entitled The Pre-historic Jesus. Please note, this is not some trendy new packaging for Jesus in which he appears in the guise of a dinosaur or caveman. Rather, I'm tying Old Testament covenants to the New Testament Jesus.
But cramming this lesson into two forty-five minute sessions with illustrations, interactions, punchlines, and theatrics was more than I could handle today. By the end of my preparations, I was exhausted to the point of boredom. A quick ransacking of the church kitchen, and my sole comfort was an expired bag of chocolate chips. They were extra soft.
The whole time I chided myself, saying, "God be your comfort, not external things." I tried playing a few songs, but songs, too, are external. As is espn.com. As text-messaging and e-mailing. (Blogging?)
The last half hour, though, I set aside for reading and reflection. I considered the concept of calling and 2 Timothy 4:1-5. I pondered the role of preaching, the immanence of Christ's return, the reality of judgment, and the role of the body of Christ in correction, rebuke, and exhortation.
When handled improperly (merely to preach to others or defend a point), the Word of Christ can just as easily become an external thing. When it 'richly dwells within,' the Word of Christ provides the ultimate comfort. And it never expires.