July 01, 2015
If you attended Rev. Sue Nilson Kibbey’s morning learning time on Breakthrough Prayer, her ordination sermon came as no surprise – ministry is all about prayer, and listening for God’s voice.
She started her sermon mentioning that she was struck by the Old Testament reading by Rev. Jim Barnett from Exodus 3, verses 1-18. The verses describe how when Moses turned to look at burning bush, God called to Moses from the midst of the bush.
“God speaks in powerful ways - just the ways that we need in the moment,” Nilson Kibbey said as she addressed the ordinands. “We’re already praying for you, but it is your own prayers that will give you that kind of (burning bush) response as you listen for God’s call.”
She posed three resolves that she asked the ordinands to consider making that night:
- When you are preparing sermons and teachings, take advantage of wonderful education that you have, the word crafting – but remember the real anointment comes not from education, allocution, or alliteration, it’s from the prayer soaking before, during and after. Be afraid to step into pulpit without prayerfully seeking God.
- Look for every opportunity as a prayer soaked opportunity for spotting burning bushes. See more burning bushes than other things. Even a disagreeable board member can give you a potential burning bush moment. Watch what happens if you resolve to looks for burning bushes everywhere.
- Resolve for your ministry to never be defined by complaints or excuses, especially your own. Right now it’s hard to imagine you’d even be tempted to do this. You’re ready to change the world. Leaders who think they are too small to make a difference will complain rather than act. Choose well. Don’t hide in convenient habits. You’re much more durable than you could ever dream.
“Your courage will be in direct proportion to your prayer life,” she said. She offered the short blessings of steady selves whole, prepare selves clear and let yourselves go.