Me as a speaker

I’m speaking this weekend at a youth conference. I have been speaking now in front of audiences for over 10 years. I started doing it professionally about six years ago. Seeing that number makes me feel like I should be doing a better job at it.

Doing this for so long, I don’t want to be the speaker that when you hear them, you know exactly what they are going to say because they do the same talk all the time. I don’t want experiences of mine that I share to become stale because I have communicated the story so many times. I say this because I am feeling unsettled about this weekend.

I have felt this way for the last couple years. I have found that audiences really connect to certain stories I share, and they fit the themes I am often asked to speak about. But because of that, I start to feel stale, completely rehearsed. All of a sudden these stories don’t feel like my stories anymore, they have become something bigger.

I have noticed that I present much like all the speakers I have seen before and worked with. I wonder, is this how I want to present, or is it just easy because it’s what I know. There are all sorts of things I would like to explore in my stories and presentations, but I just don’t have time. I want to incorporate different media, music, and other things, but in my current life style, finding the time to do that seems impossible. And having to admit that makes me feel like I’m not doing a great job at what I’ve been hired to do. So I continue to present as I do because it does work, but its not who I want to be.

So I’ve already presented this topic for the weekend, and yet I find myself re-evaluating and looking up scriptures and quotes to use. Praying through my writers block and trying to find other experiences in my life that relate to these students that they can connect with. That puts me in a tail spin of hoping I had taken the time, found the time, demanded for the time to improve my speaking style and quality of what I do.

I desire to be a person who can speak truth in a way that touches people’s lives. I want kids to enjoy scripture by showing them things that maybe they haven’t seen before or they have forgotten about. I want to inspire people into a deeper relationship with Christ. I want my audience to have life changing impact when it comes to recognizing the poor and how they can and want to help. I want to be true and honest to God’s desire for me as a speaker. This is where I feel I lack the most. I know there is understanding and grace in this, because I recognize what three children under 5 means. Right now in life, without neglecting my kids, I have to wait to really explore my style of speaking and what that means. I get that.

I know I can continue to grow in small ways, but when I am faced with a new event and the realization that I am not who I want to be, I grow nervous. I have much praying to do today. For myself and these students and that I let God be God, and I will just be me.