It is a profound privilege to lead God's people in worship and to have the awesome opportunity to preach and teach. I am grateful for the various teachers and mentors who have taught me to preach over the years. They have taught me so much about praying over, preparing, and delivering God's Word. Yet, there is a certain spontaneity that occurs every time I teach or preach the bible. There are special pastoral promptings of the Holy Spirit that move me to deviate from the particulars of what I may have planned in order to say something to the people of God that makes a biblical concept or principle more vivid to them. I cherish these occurrences when they arrive during a teaching or preaching episode. I call these occurrences "special impromptu sermonic moments".
This morning I had one of the most vivid special impromptu sermonic moments during the singing of a hymn I can ever recall. I was leading worship at the first Westminster Christian Academy chapel service (K-6th grade students) singing "Jesus Lover of My Soul" by Charles Wesley when we sang the words-
Jesus, lover of my soul, let me to Thy bosom fly,While the nearer waters roll, while the tempest still is high.Hide me, O my Savior, hide, till the storm of life is past;Safe into the haven guide; O receive my soul at last.
Just as we finished the last words of the stanza, I sensed an opportunity for a vivid explanation/teaching moment. For most of these young students I'll bet they snicker a bit singing "to thy bosom fly". I mean, "bosom" is a pretty funny word for obvious reasons, but I didn't want them to miss the perfect word choice by Wesley because they were snickering.
So, as we neared the end of the verse I looked to the back row and saw my baby son Jordan, who is a kindergartner. I stopped the pianist before she started to play the second verse and said to the standing students, "I want to show you something about what we just sang". I then called to Jordan and said, "Jordan, will you come up to daddy"? I really wasn't certain what he would do, would he pause or not come at all ? Instead, just as I had envisioned and hoped- Jordan came immediately forward down the center aisle in front of all 200 students and actually ran to me the last 10 yards. I knelt down and he crashed in to my chest and buried his head there. I held his head to myself because he was realizing everyone was staring at us and became embarrassed. As I held his little head to my chest and kind of protected him from everyone's gaze, I was able to say to the students- "See boys and girls, this is what God does for us...this is flying to God's bosom"!
It was so cool. I praise God for such a teachable moment in my life and hopefully, by His grace, in the life of the students there witnessing.
Friends, through Christ we can fly to God's bosom for protection! Go to Him! He won't ever turn you away! Bury your head in his strong chest, His protective grasp! I have always loved the words of this great hymn, but now because of a rare special impromptu sermonic moment, it has become more precious to me.