I have a surprise task of preaching this Sunday morning. I found myself looking through old sermons, remembering the situations in Zambia that sparked some of the sermons. The mechanics of sermon building have become an important element of discipleship in the last couple of years. This brings me to one of the unexpected joys of working out of Prescott; breakfast with Pastor Mitchell.
Recently Pastor Mitchell came to the breakfast table with an agenda. He had some notes for a sermon that he was going to flesh out with us. It was just myself and some young disciples but he carried on anyways. I have heard him describe his method of putting together sermons several times over the years. He takes notes and then organizes the notes into trigger thoughts. Trigger thoughts only work if you have been thinking about the sermon. Well Pastor Mitchell had obviously been thinking about this sermon.
At one point he talked about the “colony of heaven”. The young men questioned him and he began to explain. I say this because for me I remember the first time I ever heard the phrase. It was Pastor Mitchell in a conference talking about the importance of each one of the churches using the idea of a “colony of Heaven” and comparing it to the colonies of the Roman Empire. I sat there thinking about how so many of his sermons have stuck with me over the years. Yet, here he was cluing in a new generation about the way to correctly view the church.
Every pastor knows the feeling of getting a revelation from God, putting it down on paper and then organizing a sermon to highlight the revelation. What was great about that morning was watching Pastor Mitchell relish in sheer delight as the sermon came together. There was a twinkle in his eye as he tried to include us in on the direction and purpose of the sermon. This is what keeps a man happy and healthy, giving your all to the task at hand. Pastor Mitchell is still giving his all to the sermons he preaches.
You probably want to know about the sermon. Well you will just have to hope you get a chance to hear it, because it is a good one and his last words that morning were “you better not preach this before I do”.