5 Things You Don’t Want To Hear About Sermon Prep

Preparing to preach can feel like it takes an obnoxious amount of time out of your schedule. Time that you might not feel like you have available. That being said it is one of the most underestimated and overlooked parts of your church’s impact on its community. 

  1. You’re not going to be able to talk about EVERYTHING you want to. 
    • This is especially hard. When you look at a text, there is so much you can say about it and it’s nuances. It won’t be as helpful as you think. There might be lots that’s important, but what’s MOST important right now! To have the greatest impact you need the clearest message. Adding more interesting points don’t help move your audience toward action. 
  2. Knowing your next 3 months of messages isn’t optional. 
    • If you’re not planning ahead you are lowing your own bar. You begin to let the urgent be in control instead of leading your community in the direction they need to be led. 
  3. You are not Moses 
    • Sermon prep is not your weekly trip to the top of Mount Sinai, and you’re not going to get the stone tablets. Sermon prep is about you and your leaders understand the needs of your community. What do they need to hear, what are they struggling with. Paul didn’t write his letters to the church without understanding what they were dealing with. You are the same way, pull your team into this process. Understand your community. Speak to what they are struggling with. Not the thing that magically hit you on Friday afternoon. 
  4. Excluding your team from your prep process isn’t healthy
    • Excluding you team makes you the quarterback who is going to spend the entire game running the ball himself because none else knows the plays. Excluding them doesn’t let them help fill your gaps and provide supporting material. Contrary to popular belief, this isn’t a solo, endeavor. You’ve got veto power, but you need other people’s input.
  5. Last minute changes aren’t the Holy Spirit moving
    • I'm not saying he doesn’t, just saying he doesn’t do it every week. Last minute changes mean you weren’t clear enough in the beginning, not that you had a spark of genius every Friday at the last minute. 


Instead, have a plan, know where you’re going, get your team involved. Preaching is not only an exercise in communicating, it’s also a playground for leadership development, team clarity and group participation towards a common goal.