“If you’ve been in pastoral ministry for any length of time at all you’ve asked the question: Is my preaching actually doing anything? Is it having any effect?” Our hope, as the author points out, is founded on the doctrine of the Word of God.
“What did you leave out?” As Michael Kruger notes, if the answer is nothing there is room to grow in your preaching and preaching preparation.
We need not to be coddled. We need the truth. “The affirmation-only style of friendship looks good on the surface, and no wonder it’s become mainstream. But the result is a reduced understanding of friendship. Deep down, we know we don’t measure up. We know we could be better. So, when someone compliments us in areas where we know we could improve, we stop trusting them. All those words of affirmation feel superficial because they never capture the older, aspirational side of friendship.”