[John Dobbs had the idea of having some bloggers type a tribute about their favorite preachers. Here is my humble contribution this great effort.]
I read widely and listen to many preachers. Some who are close to me can tell some who influence me in different areas. However, no one has ever influenced me more as a preacher than my dad, Jim Faughn.
Being a “p.k.” is not always easy, but when the “p” is fantastic, it makes it easier! Dad never pressured me to be a preacher, and has always been one of my biggest cheerleaders in any endeavor I have done.
What is amazing is how little our preaching “styles” are alike. Dad is able to blend all sorts of information that, at first, seems to be going nowhere. However, after a few minutes, you are drawn in and start to see where the lesson is going. By the end, you are hooked and have a full picture of what God’s Word says on the matter. Dad’s preaching style is uniquely his; I have never heard anyone else do what he does, and he does it very well!
It’s what he does outside the pulpit, though, that makes dad a great preacher. Dad is the ultimate “people-person.” He can remember names, family connections, careers, stories, and nearly anything else about anyone he’s ever met. When he visits with people (which he often does), he knows just what to say and how to say it. People are truly moved by his compassion and his care for them.
Now dad serves as an elder, in addition to his work as a preacher. He is a model elder, because he truly understands the shepherding aspect of the work. He knows that an eldership is more than a “board of directors,” and he continues to press forward in reaching people with the Gospel.
I have often said, in all seriousness, that if I become half the preacher my dad is, I’ll be doing well. He isn’t a preacher for the number of speaking engagements he can garner, or how much money he can make, or how large the congregation is where he preaches (though everywhere he’s gone, the congregation has grown drastically). Dad is a preacher because he loves telling people about Jesus and loves seeing lives changed through the power of the Gospel.
May more of us have the same reason for presenting God’s Word to a lost world.
I have hundreds of stories I could tell, and things I could share that have motivated me, but I’ll just mention one thing. I’m just glad that my favorite preacher was “just dad” when he was with us. He could laugh, discipline, watch the ballgame, and go to our activities, without always looking for a sermon outline or illustration. We were just his kids, and I’m thankful for that.
I’m glad that I can honestly say, “I love my favorite preacher. He is my hero.”