Thursday, September 13, 2012

Words Worth

My son called from college last week to inform me that he had received his first college grade:  an "A" in speech class.  He had practiced the speech when he was at home over Labor Day weekend, but was, nevertheless, nervous. 

"What was the speech about?" I wondered.

"It was about how to give a speech," he answered without a hint of irony.

As old Dad, of course, I had to wax nostalgic about my days as a nineteen-year-old college freshman.  "You know what I wanted for my nineteenth birthday?" I said.  "A Bible concordance."

"What a nerd!"

"Yes," I said, "my Dad offered to buy me anything for my birthday and that's what I wanted.  I still have it, too.  Still use it every week."

My son wasn't reasonably impressed yet.

"You know what I was doing when I was nineteen?  Speaking in churches.  I preached my first sermon on Easter morning, 1980.  I was nineteen.  Been doing it ever since.  And I still hate every sermon I preach."

"I've got to go," he told me.  "Got important things to do."

"I hear you," I said. 

Nineteen . . . ?  Crap, I've been in the public-speaking biz for thirty-four years.  And taking into account a conservative estimate, I've preached at least 1000 sermons (most of them written new, or memorized).  And this would not include my longest sermon in Indiana history (12 hours) or the speaking engagements I've assumed in settings beyond my appointment. 

All of these words make me dizzy.  And it makes me wonder:  Do I have another 1000 inside of me? 

1 comment:

LisaS said...

Absolutely. And you could recycle a few; we probably wouldn't notice.