I started reading a book by a good friend of mine last night. The book is by Ken Ramey and is entitled Expository Listening. In a section entitled: Anticipation: The Listener’s Responsibility Before the Word is Preached, my friend offers this helpful advice:
- Spend time reading and meditating on God’s Word every day (personal quiet time).
- Men, lead your wife and children in regular times of worship throughout the week.
- On Saturday night or Sunday morning, take time to get your heart ready for worship.
- Read a portion of God’s Word that focuses on worshipping God and/or personal cleansing from sin.
- Thank God that through Christ you can come boldly into His presence to worship Him.
- Seek God’s forgiveness for any sins you have failed to confess and repent of during the week.
- Express to God that you understand that your best, most fervent attempts at worship are nowhere near what He deserves, and beg Him to help you worship him wholeheartedly in spirit and in truth.
Ken quotes that great preacher C. H. Spurgeon as saying,
We are told men ought not to preach without preparation. Granted. But we add, men ought not to hear without preparation. Which do you think, needs the most preparation, the sower or the ground? I would have the sower come with clean hands, but I would have the ground well-plowed and harrowed, well turned over, and the clods broken before the seed comes in. It seems to me that there is more preparation needed by the ground than by the sower, more by the hearer than the preacher.
It got me thinking. Maybe one of the reasons we’re not getting more out of Sunday sermons, is because we aren’t starting our preparation to listen early enough. So what are you doing this Saturday night? Are you gettin’ ready?