That Was My Big Toe...  

Posted by Matt

...testing the water.

Thanks first goes to Jesus. Thanks for getting me through my first talk ever and giving me your Word.

Thanks to Kenny and Shannon and Casey for showing up for moral support. You guys are my accountability partners and members of my small group. It was comforting to give that talk in front the very subject matter.

Thanks to my Shannon for giving me the space and time and patience to work on the message and for reading it over my shoulder and being my main accountability partner and for sex and for our kids.

A few thoughts:

--this was fun. I was a bit shellshocked after the talk, but as it all simmers and percolates in the aftermath, I found that I really had fun. All the fun of teaching and entertaining and offering things for people to digest and hopefully to be edified was there.

--all of that fun is increased because I know that it's for the one thing in life that I'm learning is most important. I didn't have to hold back on what I thought Jesus was giving me because it was just band or public school. This was stuff that matters and that Jesus wants us to know and obey.

--of the material I prepared, I covered probably 60%. The 40% that got left out, happily, were not main points or essential concepts. A personal story was one of the main things I missed, which makes me a little sad, because I think it's a funny and terribly relevant story. The ONLY thing that honestly makes me regretful is that the really good, meaty scripture God gave me to prepare for...right out the window. Yes, I hit the passage in John and yes, I did make reference to the passage in James and I paraphrased some other specific passages, but offering the students scripture they can jot down and look at for themselves is an important thing to

--...not a gripe against what I did, but a mental note of how I'd like to improve: less expository. I can do expository well. I can talk off the top of my head. I think there needs to plenty of expository to provide the Spirit some wiggle room and get in there and mix things up and REALLY get through, past all the scripted junk. thoughts and lessons need God's Word as credibility.

--I NEVER teach from notes. I'm used to knowing and being so familiar with my material that I can freely speak with knowledge and confidence and not worry a bit about notes. If I am going to have notes to use (just as a safety net or reference), I need to use simpler notes. I need the scripture in the order of the ideas I'm expressing.

--the rest of the worship team did a really great job of rolling with the punches tonight. Ron and the band sang and played well, covering mistakes and leading worship with no projector or words. I think Corey's testimony had slipped his mind for the week, but he wrangled story in and shared his salvation story. The skit this week was epic. Sure, random as hell, as always...but Brandon's keyboard skills and our rabbit and rabbit hunter's performances were...moving.

--I have a LOT to learn about speaking God's Word and managing a worship service (on the management end, mostly it's "How can I help you do what you do best, Ron/Kyle/Brandon/etc?"). I am, nevertheless, excited about learning it.

--thanks, Kirk, for taking a vacation for some quality time with the wife. I enjoyed and appreciate the opportunity.


"I'm used to knowing and being so familiar with my material that I can freely speak with knowledge and confidence and not worry a bit about notes."

This will come as easily to you as literature does as you continue to study, so no worries there.

" If I am going to have notes to use (just as a safety net or reference), I need to use simpler notes. I need the scripture in the order of the ideas I'm expressing."

The only notes I ever use are a full print out of each scripture reading in big letters, in case the lighting is dim and in case I can't find the verse on the spot (I've forgotten where to find James before while speaking) and key words for the story/example that I use for that topic. It seems to work well for me, although it does allow for rambling.

Glad you enjoyed it, we both thought the topic was covered well.

I really wish I could have been there. I would have if Spivey wouldn't explode without a certain few of us there :/ I'd like to hear a recording or something though if you have it!

On the subject of notes, I've realized that people really go two different ways. When Coop or I speak, we take a skeletal outline, more to keep the flow than to remember any points. I really feel more comfortable using that method. I also know people, however, that write almost their entire message down on paper, and it works for them.

Wish I could have been there man. Glad it was a success for you. Walking away with lessons learned and a sense of accomplishment seems like you are well on your way to finding a calling.

It may sound sappy or odd coming from me but I'm proud of you. Good job.

I'm jealous that you live too far away for me to have gone and see that. Considering your personality, and your presence, I'm sure it was rewarding, as well as entertaining and insightful to others.

Good job!

Breaking my rule of no commenting on the comments:

...thanks, guys. From people I admire, respect, and love...that means a lot. I hope we can all be together for as long as possible and to encourage each other as we develop and become better at what we do.

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I'm just a suburban guy. I wish I were hardcore, I wish I were tougher, I wish I listened to cooler music, I wish I weren't a lush, I wish I had big muscles, cooler hair, and some rad tattoos, I wish I were smarter, cooler, and sexier, I wish I knew how to play guitar. Instead, I'm just a band geek, power-nerd wannabe, WoW gamer, 30 year-old dad and husband. I play french horn, I read the Vampire Chronicles as well as the Chronic-WHAT?!-les of Narnia, I like movies, but not all the snobby-artsy ones I'm "supposed" to see, and a good meal to me is Miller Lite with chicken patties topped in barbecue sauce. ...oh...and I have a big mouth.


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