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Getting to the root

It's been an interesting week.  I've had some good, even if frustrating, a-ha moments. 

4 years ago, fresh out of seminary and thrilled about my upcoming appointment in the United Methodist Church I lost my voice.  Some days it feels more like my vocal chords were ripped from my throat. I put some band-aids over the wounds and garnered some strength and began to speak and preach again.  There were days, runs of weeks even, when my voice felt stronger, I thought I was gaining strength and healing, recovering from the wounds but then I'd catch site of blood and speak and preach quietly again.
I don't think I had a clue how deep the wound was/is.

Last fall, I felt attacked as a member of the district committee on ordained ministry asked me, "Do you even like preaching?"  He went on to say that I had no passion, no energy, that I did not proclaim the gospel.  For months I've carried this with me.  It's eaten at the vocal chords, gnawing on them, gobbling up whatever was left from the "accident" 4 years ago.  After much anger on my part, thinking has this man even met me?  Doesn't he know that I am nothing if not passionate and fiery and energetic?  And then I realized that he was probably right.  How could my preaching have been passionate and energetic when my vocal chords have been ripped out?  How could I exude passion and energy when every word is tentatively spoken?  How could I like preaching when I was so very afraid of it? 

This week I realized that I have got to tell my story.  The whole story.  For 4 years I've told bits and pieces of it but never the whole thing.  It is my hope that in telling the whole story that I will begin to rebuild my voice, to shake off the chains of fear and doubt so that I may preach the gospel with passion, energy, and courage.

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If they can't hear your story, they won't know your heart. Most of the difference we can make in ministry comes from knowing each other's hearts.
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