There’s nothing like a good snoozer of a sermon. We’ve all sat through them. We’ve all given them at one point or another. But what does it take to preach a sermon that makes your listeners fall sound asleep? What does it take to defy everyone’s ability to pay attention? If you aspire to give boring sermons that help your people catch up on rest while you preach, here are five easy steps:
Archive | July, 2014
As a preacher, it’s easy to focus on your content and not really consider if your listeners are ready to hear it.
You’ve been studying your material all week, and you’re totally energized by it. It’s all you’ve thought about for days. You are so excited to finally share these thoughts that are bursting out of you.
But your listeners aren’t there yet. They walked into church with everything on their minds except your sermon. They have nowhere near the same level of enthusiasm about your topic that you have.
That’s the way it works. You care. They probably don’t.
So what can you do?
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Not long after we were married, my wife told me I was using “preacher voice” with her and she really wished I would just have a normal conversation. I asked her what she meant by “preacher voice.” She told me that when I start talking I sometimes default into giving a mini-sermon about the topic. I use a slightly louder voice and get kind of preachy. We had a good laugh about it, but it made me think about how that comes across to others.
The best sermons are conversations. You want to make everyone feel as if you are having a conversation with them. Like they’re the only person in the room. Like you’re sitting at a table with with them and discussing a problem, a concern, a big thing God wants them to do.
Two primary points of feedback I’ve heard recently about my sermons:
You come across very personable when you preach.
You have a conversational preaching style.
In most cases people explain how my approach makes them feel. They say that it is disarming because they can relate to me like I’m a real person – not a disconnected preacher guy. Because I seem authentic, they trust me and want to listen.
I understand that not everyone takes a conversational approach, and I’m not saying conversational style is the only way, but I am suggesting it’s worth a try. Here is a way to experiment with a conversational approach:
Welcome to Preaching Donkey! This blog is about becoming better at communicating the message you want to get across. A lot of preaching resources focus on content; this one is more about communication.
Some topics I write about include sermon prep, sermon structure, sermon length, conversational preaching, getting feedback, rehearsing sermons, public speaking tools, maximizing impact, and anything else related to perfecting the art of preaching.