People often ask how I prepare to preach on Sunday mornings. Ultimately, it’s all about Jesus, but I realize I have a responsibility as a shepherd to do all I can to be prepared. Ideally I try to be completely finished with my sermon Friday, so I can take Saturday off. Sometimes I’ll spend an hour or so on Saturday doing one final edit. I try to limit my activities and get a good night’s rest Saturday night. I almost never work on my message on Sunday morning.

I do, however, have some Sunday morning routines, which help me best prepare.

Here are 5 ways I prepare best on Sunday mornings:

Read something in the Bible other than the passage I’m preaching on – I want to feed myself before I try to teach others. I usually am reading through the Bible and I continue this on Sunday mornings.

Pray – I spend longer than other mornings in prayer on Sunday mornings. It prepares my heart. I pray for those who will be in attendance and those who may still be debating attending. I pray for God’s presence to be with us. I pray for other leaders in the church. I seek a sense of oneness with God’s heart to mine.

Exercise – I don’t get to every Sunday, but when I do get to exercise, I am more mentally alert and physically prepared than when I don’t.

Worship – Ideally, I love to put the Sunday morning line-up of worship music in a playlist and allow the music to lead me in worship. Either way, I find a time to worship on Sunday mornings. When I’ve made much of God before I get to church, I find I’m better able to make much of Him.

Pray – Just before I preach I have a fairly standard prayer. It goes something like this, “God, I can’t do this. You know I’m not worthy to speak on Your behalf. You know and I know that it’s only by Your grace I can be here this morning. If You don’t show up, today will be meaningless.”

That’s how I prepare on Sundays.

How do you do it, pastor?