Doug Munton on the Privilege of Preaching

Doug Munton, online at, is senior pastor of First Baptist Church in O’Fallon, Ill., and a former first vice president of the Southern Baptist Convention.

The ringing of my phone jarred me awake at 2:55 on Sunday morning. 2:55! Vaguely conscious, I mumbled some sort of greeting.

Someone on the other line said something about being with a security company and that an alarm was going off at our church. Slowly, the fog in my brain began to lift and I asked a few questions.

Apparently, the wind had caused an unlocked door to set off an alarm. No motion detectors were activated so it seemed all was well. After some additional words the phone call ended.

It was nearly 3 a.m.

Since becoming a pastor years ago, Saturday night sleep has always been fitful. I toss and turn. I wonder if I have the right illustration and if I’m transitioning well to the second point and beyond.

Not 30 minutes later, the power went out at our house. Storms in the area had obviously damaged something. I lay in the sudden quiet of our bedroom, wondering about the weather and whether the power would come back on and if I was closing the upcoming sermon with the right oomph.

I decided sleep was just going to have to wait. At 3:30 on Sunday morning I stumbled around to find a candle. Careful not to awaken my sleeping wife, I showered and shaved by candlelight, dressed and thought about whether my sermon introduction was adequate.

Reaching the kitchen, I was chagrined to discover that the lack of power also meant there was no coffee.

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Source: Baptist Press