I was afraid this would happen. Yesterday I preached my first sermon without a manuscript. I got through it a little quicker than I thought I would, but it wasn't horrible. I had a timer up on the podium with me to keep track. I don't know what I thought I would do if I got to the end too quickly, but whatever. It helped.
I didn't go completely note-less like I did in the class I took in Synod School. I would like to, but for some reason I was a little nervous (weird since I really never get nervous about things). I took an outline with me because I just couldn't figure out the structure of one part of it until very close to the last minute. I didn't trust myself to remember the order around that part. No big deal. It meant I couldn't wander, but I wasn't really feeling up to wandering either.
So, here's the problem (one I anticipated, but didn't have a plan for addressing yet): After worship someone asked me for a copy of my sermon. I ordinarily give them whenever asked and post them to my blog and the church blog (except when I get behind like I did this summer). Of course the first time I go without a manuscript is the week that someone actually asks, though. I don't think they are related. I think it's because I worked with a difficult text in, honestly, a good way. So now what? I do NOT want to get in a habit of writing my sermon after the fact just to have something to give people.
I'm going to offer this woman an audio recording. We are recording sermons digitally for video upload, so eventually that might be what we put on the blog. Maybe that will work for some people, too. I also worry about what I will do 3 years from now when I want to remember what I preached. I think I still need to put some sort of notes, maybe my basic outline and focus in a little shortened devotional length format, on my blog so I have that for the next time around.