The title for this post comes from the following verse of Scripture:
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. (Colossians 3:16 ESV)
Last Sunday evening, when our church comes together to pray, one of our brothers modeled what I think Paul meant in this verse. Now, the content of what this brother said is very dear to me and my family, but it is not important for this post.
While we were praying for one another, this brother asked us to pray for him. Then, he shared something the God was teaching him through his personal Bible study. He quickly (but not in a rushed manner) walked us through several passages of Scripture. Then he explained how God was showing him that this was not a reality in his life.
I know that as I was listening to this brother share from the depths of his heart and his hurt and his desire to walk in Christ, I was also convicted and taught and admonished to walk with the Lord in a similar manner. As I looked around at the brothers and sisters around me, I could tell that others were being convicted and encouraged and exhorted and taught at the same time.
Another brother confirmed this when he prayed for the one who shared the request. He confessed in his prayer that he also was not living this truth. He asked God to strengthen all of us and to bring us all into right fellowship with God in this area.
Our brother did not “preach”, but the word of God was proclaimed. He did not present three points from a Scripture passage, but the “point” of Scripture was communicated clearly. He was not talking from his intelligence or knowledge, but from a deep desire to walk with God in an area where he was deficient. He had not studied in order to teach, but he studied in order to know his Lord and to live out the gospel; then he taught what God was teaching him.
Perhaps, more importantly, this was not a planned “preaching” event – and, it probably only lasted ten minutes at the most. Instead, since the church allowed many people to share what God is doing in their lives, this brother had the chance to edify the church.
In response to this brother’s instruction, exhortation, confession, and admonition, we prayed, we sang a song, and we read additional Scripture – all unplanned, and all related to the same topic. And, the Word of Christ dwelled in us richly.