There may be as many jokes about preaching as there are about lawyers, dumb blondes and talking animals that walk into taverns. Pastors usually bear the levity cast at their profession with a forgiving heart, though it's difficult to hear your work ridiculed.
And preaching is difficult work.
Each week preachers try to construct a message that will move, inspire, educate and sometimes chastise the listeners — hoping to make them more effective believers.
And they need your help. The quality of preaching doesn't depend upon the preacher alone. A sermon is enhanced or diminished by the way you listen to it. Here's what you can do to improve your preacher's pulpit skills.
1. Prepare yourself to listen carefully. Pay attention to the Scripture lessons read during worship — they are usually the basis for the sermon. Meditate on the theme of the day. Read the lessons before you go to church and listen to how they speak to you. Frame some questions that come to mind.
The rest of this article is only available to subscribers.
© 2013 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers