Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Preach Better Sermons Conference

Pastor Philip and I didn't go into the office today. Instead, we headed to Duncanville and attended the Preach Better Sermons conference hosted by Preaching Rocket. The conference was excellent! We heard two sessions by Jeff Henderson and Reggie Joiner, a recorded session by Andy Stanley and a closing session by Pastor Brian Carter from the host church. Here's a few highlights I took away from the conference:

  • Prepare your sermon in the Crock Pot instead of trying to microwave it. Start early in the week so that, as things happen and ideas come to you, you can add them to the sermon. Trying to "microwave it" a day or two before Sunday does not allow this to happen. -Jeff Henderson
  • The essential ingredient for a great sermon is CONNECTIVITY. Connection, not information, is the difference between a message that falls flat and a message that soars. -Jeff Henderson
  • What is the single most persuasive idea I can convey? Think not about Sunday morning so much as Monday morning around the water cooler at work. Can those who heard you tell others what you said? If they can...that is a priceless moment. -Jeff Henderson
  • What you say doesn't matter {to people} because it's true. it matters when it matters. You should care so much about the truth that you make it matter to people. -Reggie Joiner
  • Say what matters in a way that matters. How we say something affects the way people receive it. Words matter...especially if you want your words to stick. -Reggie Joiner
  • Say it authentically so it matters more. What you say matters more when people know it matters to you. What you say matters more when people know they matter to you. When an idea you care about becomes a person you care about, it changes how you communicate. When people matter, you learn how to say something that helps them and that gives them hope. -Reggie Joiner
  • If you have the right idea but use the wrong approach, wrong approach will trump right idea every time. Does my approach to preaching the Scriptures support or trump my goal? -Andy Stanley
  • How to Preach With Unchurched People in the Room -Andy Stanley
    1. Let them know that you know they are there and you're happy abut it
    2. Choose A {one} passage of Scripture and stay with it. 
    3. Give them permission not to believe or oby.
    4. Avoid "The Bible Says" {wow, this was such a good one but too much to explain it all here}. Cite authors (Moses, Matthew, Paul, James, etc) not just "the Bible says". Don't quote Bible illustrations assuming people know the story. Assume nothing.
    5. Acknowledge the odd things in the Scriptures. Don't just go with, "This may not make sense, but it's the Word of God so it happened and that's all there is to say about that." Say what you think unchurched people are thinking about what you read/say. When you do, you gain credibility by it.
  • Unbelievers can be offended by a God who paid for their sin so they didn't have to (because they could not), and that is good. If they are offended by anything else in the sermon, that is on you. -Andy Stanley

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