As a pastor, delivering a great sermon is less about one’s self and more about the message communicated to the congregation. Churchgoers get out of bed in the morning with the expectation that they will go to church, fellowship with others, receive a spiritual message that will fill them and leave with thoughts to ponder for the week as they apply the teachings to their lives. If you’re considering online ordination, know that delivering a great sermon is vitally important as it relates to the growth of your members’ spiritual lives.
- Teach from the Bible, with applicable anecdotes
Members of the congregation are looking to be filled, and to personally connect with the message being delivered. If you are teaching from a particular passage in the Bible, provide historical context on why it was written, what is the history behind it, where did it come from and perhaps how you have applied it or learned from it in your own life. Provide attendees with practical application on what living out that passage might look like in their daily lives, and why it will enhance their overall spiritual growth and walk with God.
- Be confident, but humble at the same time
Many churchgoers and even visitors are put off by pastors who “preach” too much from the pulpit, where they feel condemned in a certain way. Assert your confidence in the knowledge and authority that you have from the particular passage you’re teaching from, but also communicate the heart of the lesson and the grace intended as well. Relate similar instances from your life where you have learned from it through your practical application, and always leave with a message of hope and encouragement. Communicate that you are also the same as they are, and use each sermon as a “teachable moment” that everyone can learn from.
- Respect the time allocated for the sermon
Attention spans can waver if sermons go on for too long. Pastors get a bad rap for being too verbose, but it is true that members may get antsy if the length of the sermon is extended beyond what is normal. Keep it simple, yet with depth; provide practical application for members, but also allow for real teaching to occur. Learn from other pastors how they keep “clock watchers” at bay, while respecting the attention needs and desires of the congregation members. Time management is a skill learned in sermon delivery, but it helps to keep it on the forefront of your mind as well.
If you are considering online ordination, the tips above well help as you consider best practices for sermon delivery. Online ordination is a wonderful way to have a meaningful career with an eternal investment.