The Best Sermons Are Lived, Not Preached

Nick MartineauBlog

The Best Sermons Are Lived, Not Preached

Years ago I pastored a Cowboy Church down in Texas. Those people are near and dear to my heart. I was with them for 5 years, and they often told me part of their “mission” as a church was to give new pastors a chance and to help them develop and gain experience. They were kind and gracious to me, and I often think what a great gift it was to be their pastor.

One of the elders of that church is a man named Don Jones. When I picture what a cowboy looks like, I picture Don. He’s a tall, tough-looking man, with an unwavering heart for Jesus. Don is one of the wisest men I’ve ever known.

During my 5 years with the Cowboy Church, I can remember Don on numerous occasions pulling me aside and saying, “Don’t forget, the best sermons are lived, not preached.”

I called Don and his wife this past week just to check in and see how they were doing. We talked about all of the chaos currently going on in our world and how we, as Jesus followers, are called to be a light in these dark times. It was then again that Don reminded me, “Nick, don’t forget, the best sermons are lived, not preached.” Simple but wise words.

We can talk all we want about the current ways of the world, but our lives tell a more powerful story. I truly believe there’s a place for good sermons, but a more powerful message is taught through the way we live our lives.

I’m reminded of Paul’s words written to the church in Corinth.

“You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone. You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.” (2 Cor. 3:2)

It is one thing to speak out against the darkness in our world, and it is another to trust in Jesus and live a life of light for all to see.

“I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” Ephesians 4:1-2