“Red Auerbach, the legendary Boston celtics coach, said that if a player missed a pass from another player it was the passer’s fault because, as Auerbach put it, ‘if the passer was communicating properly, the receiver would get the message and be at the right place at the right time to catch the ball.'” (Keough, Donald R. “The Ten Commandments for Business Failure” p. 145)
In the art of pastoring, few things are as significant as communication. This could be in the pulpit on a Sunday morning, in a hallway after the services, in your office in a counseling appointment or around town in random locations. Communication can be a spoken reality or a non-verbal form. It can be of light and momentary weight, or of eternal significance (or both!). It is, however, always our responsibility.
Begin with this thought in mind: I have been called, gifted and ordained in order to communicate the truth of the gospel to the world. This is not an equal relationship where if they don’t get it, it’s their fault as much as mine.
To carry the metaphor along, what they do with the truth of the gospel is up to them. They can shoot the ball, pass the ball or dribble the ball to another location; but passing it to them is my responsibility.
In following St. Augustine’s dictum of making the truth plain, pleasing and moving we will be careful to heed Auerbach’s warning of making it catchable as well.