Archive | October, 2014

How to Get More Helpful Feedback on Your Sermons

more helpful feedback

There are few things more vulnerable than preaching. If you do it right, it is a moment when you bare your soul for the world to see. So it makes sense that you wonder what people think of your preaching. You want to know if your sermon worked. Did God use it to move people? Sometimes you just want someone to tell you that you did great so you don’t feel as awful about your mediocre sermon (we’ve all been there).

Most of us walk away from a sermon we’ve preached with this resounding thought: Validate me, tell me how great my sermon was because I need to feel worthy as a person!

Categorically positive feedback is acceptable from your mom or your spouse. Everyone needs someone cheering them on. But you have to pursue more meaningful feedback from others if you want to get better. You should seek feedback that actually makes a difference. You want the kind that tells you if your sermons are doing what they’re supposed to do – making an impact.

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5 Practical Things Preachers Can Learn from Paul

 5 Practical things Paul

In our effort to become better preachers we often learn from the best preachers in our generation. We watch the superstars and take notes gleaning all we can from them. This, by the way, is a good thing. While you should never seek to copy someone else or become them, you can always learn a great deal from studying best practices. But we have a lot to learn not only from our contemporaries, but also from those who have gone before. One leader and preacher who we can learn a great deal from is Paul. Continue Reading →

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Here’s Why You Need a Weekly Sermon Prep Schedule

Here's why you need a weekly sermon prep schedule graphic

 

The days leading up to a sermon can be very stressful for a preacher. Your sermon content is on your mind constantly. The responsibility of preparing a sermon can be daunting because when Sunday comes you have to deliver. You need a plan, a guide, a schedule to keep you on track. Here’s why you need a weekly sermon prep schedule:

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4 Mistakes Preachers Make when Ending a Sermon

four mistakes preachers make

How you begin your sermon is vital. It can mean the difference between your listeners checking out or deciding to pay close attention. The things you say at the beginning of a sermon are what your listeners subconsciously use to build a framework for your whole message. If your thoughts are murky and unclear, you’re laying an unstable foundation.

But the way you end a sermon is just as important. If the closing of your message is disorganized and unclear, then your listeners will walk away feeling the same way about your message – that it was disorganized and unclear.

When I first began preaching I would prepare relentlessly for the first five minutes of my sermon. I wanted my opening thoughts to be perfect. I would prepare the opening remarks and the body of the sermon with careful detail. But when it came to the end of my message I would just let the sermon kind of close itself. I didn’t have a plan for ending my sermons most of the time.

The result was a lot of missed opportunities where I could have had a much sharper impact if I had called people to action or drove a point home. Instead, I just winged most of them. I have learned from these mistakes and I now plan much better for closing my sermons. I want to share with you some of the mistakes I have made because a lot of preachers make the same ones. Here are four common mistakes preachers make when ending a sermon:

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