I had the opportunity once again (3rd year running) of being a judge for the National Fine Arts competition - this time in Orlando, Florida.
Basically, for me this means sitting in a chair from 9 am until 6 pm for 3 days with only a 1 hour break for lunch at noon, listening to a little more than 50 5 minute sermons per day.
Now, you'd think after listening to over 150 sermons in 3 days, that I'd learn a little something, like perhaps how to preach a 5 minute sermon (keep praying ... but I don't think it's going to happen!) or even get a couple good outlines that I could use myself in the future. But no.
It's a frenzied few days that builds and builds with pressure as you end up being one of 3 judges to decide who was the best (or the best of the best) of what I believe was over 400 short sermon contestants!
Thing is - the competition (or festival, if you prefer) isn't really at all about the poor plight of a whiny judge. The competition is all about the students. It's so wonderful to listen to hundreds of kids 'preach the Word'. It's so encouraging to see so many do an incredible job of bringing life to the Scriptures.
I know that even a few days removed from Orlando, most of the names and faces are a blur in my memory, there are a few that remain. These few will represent all to me as I pray that God will continue to use and bless these students and that the Word of God they have hidden in their hearts will NOT return void, but rather bear fruit and be a blessing to them for the rest of their lives.
in between bites & sips ...
thanks for stopping by! here's where i put various thought, quotes or stories. most will be brief, some may be extended - but all will be somehow connected to my world. enjoy your stay!