Sunday, December 18, 2011

Memorable lines in a sermon

From this morning's excellent (encouraging, inspiring, moving, pointing to God's power in our lives) sermon, I can just about report word for word these lines:

The rugby rules of life,

Always feed your backs,

Never go down the blindside on your own,

When in trouble, always kick for touch.

Worth thinking about why I can recall these so well. Here is my thinking:

- I am interested in rugby and could relate to each rule.

- A connection was made between 'rugby' and 'life' which made me listen intently ('what has the game to do with real life?' was the curiosity value in this part of the sermon).

- Just three rules (four and I might not remember them all!)

- The last rule has a lovely touch of humour: the rule applied on the rugby field is excellent; the rule applied to life is questionable as it sounds like being advised to run away from a problem, or to hand it over to someone else to deal with. The difference between the two contexts provides both subtle humour and food for thought: thinking about this rule meant ending this exercise in listening in the same frame of intensity as at the beginning.

I could over analyse this! But the point for preachers is straightforward: we can find words to say things in such a way that they are memorable and we can avoid doing that with the effect that our words are less effective.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Ten Steps To Better Preaching

Couldn't say this better than it is said here. So read it and do it!