If you are preparing to give a sermon in church, it is likely that you are quite nervous. Plunging into the proverbial biblical waters is a huge responsibility and one not to be taken lightly. You will have probably watched ministers give sermons in an Orange County church and thought they made it look really is. But it isn’t a walk in the park, although you can practice to become really good at it. Let’s take a look at three key things to help you prepare.
Position and Preframe
You need to know what your congregation looks for in a sermon. You want to make sure that you are talking about something that they will find interesting and that makes them enthusiastic and ready to hear more. There are always people who are in church because someone else told them to go, which means they won’t be happy about being there, but your role is to make sure that you know how to grip the attention of those who do want to be there and, with a bit of luck, make their enthusiasm contagious to those who would have rather spent their Sunday morning in bed or watching a football match.
They say that proper preparation prevents poor performance, also known as the 5 P’s, and they are very much true. You may be a natural speaker, but you still have to prepare yourself. Some of history’s greatest speakers, like Dr. King, Malcolm X, Barack Obama, and so on, are all excellent speakers. But they are also prepared. They know what they want to talk about, they have written notes, they have thought about the overall message they want to convey. Key is also to keep things as short as possible, which you can’t do if you don’t know where your sermon is going.
Show You Are Confident
Just like dogs can smell fear, and cats instinctively go to the person with the allergies, your congregation will be able to tell if you’re nervous. You may think that you will come across as endearing, which may be true to a degree, but it is not the feeling you want to go for. You don’t want to be a cute, helpless person who they are there to encourage. You are supposed to be a leader and mentor, someone who inspires others to do great things. Even if you don’t feel confident, you have to pretend that you are and make it the acting performance of a lifetime as well.
Really good church sermons always look super easy, yet they are hugely inspirational. However, the only reason why they look so easy is because the person who is delivering the sermon knows their stuff. They know what they are talking about, which verses they want to focus on, what the personality of their congregation is, and more. They make people hang on their every word, because they say things in a way that people want to listen to.