I have spent time trying to figure out the “when,” the “how” and the “why.” When was it that preachers became my heroes? How did it happen? Why did it happen? I’m not sure that I’ve been able to pinpoint the precise answers to those questions. All I can determine is that it started very early and that there were two groups of people who influenced me down this path: (1) preachers and (2) my parents.
I wish all preachers would recognize the direct and positive impact that they do (and can) have on children. Too many preachers ignore them, shoo them away or merely tolerate them. Perhaps it is because of those kinds of preachers that we don’t have more young men longing to be preachers today. Fellow preachers, we can all do better.
Equally so, I wish parents would recognize the direct and positive impact that they do (and can) have on their sons in becoming preachers. I’m not sure my parents set out intentionally to influence me to become a preacher, but in looking back, they did many things to point me down that path.
First, there are things that I do not remember my parents ever doing. I do not remember them ever speaking negatively about a preacher or his lessons. I do not remember them putting a preacher down in any way.
In fact, just the opposite is true. I remember my parents speaking very highly about and to preachers. They invited preachers into our home. They loved when visiting preachers and missionaries came and always did things to encourage them while they were here. On one family vacation out west, we even stopped to see an older preacher (who was dear to our family), who was nearing death.
Preachers were never disparaged in our home. Rather, they were always esteemed (but not more highly than was responsible). I’m not saying that they were deified, but they were highly respected, which prompted my young brain to want to “be one of those guys who gets to preach.”
Parents, this article is not intended in any way to be self-serving! Rather, I want to urge you to take seriously the opportunity to urge your son to be a preacher. Often, unfortunately, that’s the last thing some parents ever wish for their sons. I have to admit, I don’t fully (or even partially) understand that at all. I assure you that there is no better life.
Friends, our world needs more preachers! Our Lord needs more preachers! Our church (nationally and globally) needs more preachers! Our families need more preachers! From my earliest memories, I always wanted to be a preacher. Let us all (please) encourage our young men to preach.