Consider a Growth Prompt

Many preachers never receive any training in their preaching.  Sadly, for some, that is due to a lack of available resources.  For others, perhaps it is simply habit or an unawareness of their need.  By training I am referring to everything from taking a full degree, a complete preaching course, an introductory seminar, a workshop, to studying through a book on the subject, etc.

I was pondering the fact that there are many preachers who only learn to preach by observing others.  While this can be a great source of instruction, it is lacking in several key ways.  Learning by observing does not provide the learner with feedback, critique and help as they preach.  But there is another concern that I’d like to point out today:

Preachers who only learn by observing others preach are limited by the standard of preaching they observe.  If the pool of preachers is a relatively closed group (as in most churches or denominations), then this will typically result in progressively degenerating standards.

What can you do to prompt growth in your preaching and help avoid a mass degeneration of standards in your church circles?

2 thoughts on “Consider a Growth Prompt

  1. Hi! I thoroughly agree! Though observing the style of sermon and delivery of others is an important tool for learning, every minister or student minister needs to develope his/her own style. This takes time, an understanding of the Biblical content on which the message is to be constructed, practice delivering that message in a context agreeable with ones own personality (try it out in your own garage or secure location first to see how it goes), and making certain you are bathing the experience in prayer! When actually delivering your message you need to be aware that your audience will be WATCHING as well as listening!

  2. In 2006 a group of people complained to our board of elders that my preaching “was too deep.” (Imagine that as a problem?) The next spring (2007) I was interviewing to become homiletics professor at a college in the midwest U.S. (I eventually turned them down,even though they offered me the job). But in the interview one of the interviewers asked, “What have you read recently on preaching?” And I had to admit I had not read ANYTHING on preaching recently. That got me thinking and in May 2007 I began a preaching blog simply to hold me accountable to be reading on preaching, listening to workshops on preaching, attending workshops on preaching, listening to others preach, and otherwise WORKING on improving in the area of preaching. I felt that by putting myself out there before the world in a blog, I didn’t want to be ashamed that I had nothing new to post. And I would only have something to post if I was studying on preaching. (Your blog has been a wonderful resource for me! Thank you.) Having that accountability has proven to be excellent for me. I not only enjoy the blogging, but numerous people have commented that that was the time my preaching really began to take off to new levels. Almost two years later I am still at it!

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