The Best Preachin’ In Town
I am a firm believer that the best preaching in our towns and cities needs to be coming across our Pentecostal pulpits! This conviction has caused me much concern, prayer and study. The Message we have to proclaim certainly deserves the best presentation we can give it. The art of great gospel preaching, getting the message clearly and interestingly across to people, should be an on-going desire of every preacher. Our Apostolic Message can never change but our method of delivery needs to be adjusted and improved continually.
We want to be like Jesus! The Bible says the common people heard him gladly! He was constantly using illustrations and stories to get his message understood by the people. People still enjoy a story told well! Illustrations are the windows of our message so light can shine on the truth being presented. Finding illustrations when we need them is not the easiest thing to do. It takes continual watchfulness to catch stories, news events, and personal experiences and translate them into wonderful illustrations. To be able to file and to retrieve that information when needed is an on-going process of discipline so don’t be discouraged and don’t give up. The wise man said,” A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver”. Our faithful people who hear us week after week and keep coming back deserve our best and our best needs to get better year by year!
Therefore, our preaching should be interesting and exciting, enjoyable and motivating!
We must be an honest critic of ourselves. If we can’t stand the heat, we have to get out of the kitchen but, we were called to this kitchen where hot “Bread” is served in a variety of flavors and aromas. Our self-criticism must have the end result of us being motivated to do better, and excited about our next time “up to bat”. This exercise of inspecting our own preaching is NOT to put us in despair, hopeless and down on ourselves. So, go ahead and pull out the tape recorder or camera and make a tape of one of your well prepared messages. Now you become the Monday Morning Quarterback. Find a hideout in your home and listen attentively. Recognize every good thing about your presentation and also determine where you can improve. If you have a lot of confidence in your ability to speak well – be tough with yourself! If you lack that kind of confidence – be easy on yourself and encourage yourself with compliments. It usually proves out that the more confidence we have, the better speaker we can be. Our confidence springs from believing that with God’s help and anointing we can do a good job of proclaiming the Truth of God’s Word.
The prophet said, ”Bring me a minstrel”… and then I’ll prophesy. All of the other parts of our church services should be well thought out. The worship, announcements, special songs and welcoming of guests should be interesting, not drawn out, anointed and designed to set the atmosphere for hearing the word of the Lord.
Speaking of the anointing, let’s talk about our great need of it and how to get it flowing. Anointing is what gives us the spiritual energy to preach with authority. It puts life into whatever we are saying. The anointing will quicken our minds to remember incidents and illustrations that will make Truth, clear and understandable. We must live and walk with our Lord to maintain his anointing. Our conscience must be clear and others should know that we have “been with Jesus!” Do not make it a practice to counsel people with problems just before the service. Protect the peace in your mind and spirit. It will always help if before the service we can get into the Spirit and pray in the Spirit until there is a good flow of that anointing in our human spirit. Refuse to let little irritations, that happen in almost every service, trouble us. Preach to those who came to hear you and feed them well.
Now, to the actual delivery of our message. We need to be mobile as we are speaking. Jesus sat in a boat as it moved up and down with the small waves. He taught on the side of a hill with the Sea of Galilee as a backdrop. Sometimes in the synagogue and many times out in a natural setting where there was constant movement of some kind. For us to be mobile in our churches, we must know our material and its sequence well enough so we can walk around our platforms and in the congregation and keep our message flowing. If you have been stuck behind your pulpit, a good way to break loose is when you’re using a Bible story as an illustration, you know the story by heart, go out front and move and tell it. In a wonderful book by Timothy A. Turner entitled, Preaching To Programmed People , Pastor Turner says, ”Moving objects generate attention”.
As I read Turner’s conclusion as to the kind of speaking that will best reach our present generation, the realization came to me that he was describing a Holy Ghost anointed Apostolic Preacher on fire with his message, preaching with passion and burden! Let us rise to the challenge and determine that the best preaching in our town and city will be coming across our pulpit this Sunday morning. That kind of preaching is where we can shine for Jesus! Let’s Roll!!