In these posts I’m reviewing my best takeaways from Gallo’s book, Talk Like TED: The 9 Public Speaking-secrets of the World’s Top Minds. One of them helped confirm for me something that goes against some conventional wisdom on preaching.
I remember being warned not to try to come up with something new for Sunday sermons. The reason was that novelty can easily slip into unorthodoxy.
Gallo, however, includes a chapter entitled, Teach Me Something New (p. 111).
He writes, “Reveal information that’s completely new to your audience, packaged differently, or offers a fresh and novel way to solve an old problem” (p. 113).
The word, “completely,” might be a stretch since older, well-versed congregations are familiar with most, if not all, the Bible–cover to cover. But the quote is helpful in telling us how to look at developing sermons with the goal in mind of giving them something they’ve never heard.
Here’s why giving ’em something they’ve never heard before should be your goal for this Sunday:
- Your spiritual gift yields new insights into God’s Word.
- Your spiritual gift, which includes your unique thinking patterns and study habits, yields new insights into God’s Word. The first two bullets produce the new theological information.
- Your spiritual gift, unique thinking/studying, plus your style and personality yields new insights into God’s Word. This last bullet produces the different packaging; different everything from introduction to conclusion, the entire sermon sequence.
One of the things that makes good preachers good is their ability to say some new things and say some familiar things in new ways. Think about the preachers you admire. Am I right?
Before Sunday see if you have something remarkable to say. Gallo writes, “And ‘remarkable’ is a really cool word because we think it just means neat, but it also means–worth making a remark about” (p. 127).
Finally, keeping asking God for insight so that novelty doesn’t lead to unorthodoxy and so He receives glory in the church and in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 3:21).