Sunday was a strange day. I had missed the church 'Away Day' to prepare my sermon for the 8am service. I had wanted to be at the Away Day, but there are duties to be performed. I had spent quite a lot of short pieces of time on the flight to Atlanta and in the hotel room reading and making notes. Thursday morning was spent writing an outline of sorts. I started preparation on Friday evening and was hoping to complete the sermon then. That should leave enough time on Saturday to practice. I wrote two or three paragraphs straight off and then needed a pause to work out the direction. A few minutes later I woke myself up by almost hitting my head on the keyboard. I needed sleep. That was all I could do. My concentration was gone.
Saturday morning I started in good time but my thoughts were not on the sermon. It seemed to have been prepared in another country. I struggled. I prayed. I struggled some more but fluency only came after lunch. I'd just about finished when Jo returned from the Away Day. Early evening I did my first practice. It was not good. The words and thoughts did not flow. The illustrations seemed to be separated from the text. Too late for a re-write now. Another half-hearted practice later was no better.
See what you think of the final result. It sounded better to me at church than it had all weekend.
By the time we came to the 10am I was again half asleep. Maybe jet lag, but more likely I just hadn't slept enough, it was a very uncomfortable overnight flight back on Friday morning. Liz did a good job of leading the service and Steve Kersey told a very long story. I did wonder if he would get to a point. It did seem to hold people's attention, and he did get to the point in the end.
Have you ever asked for anything lots and lots of times? Did you get it? Did it help when you did? Those questions seem to be the basic framework.
This week I will be mostly asking for the chance to catch up on my sleep.