Sometimes when we find ourselves bored or distracted through the sermon, or we feel like the messages aren’t impacting our lives, our natural tendency is to blame … yes, you guessed it … the preacher.
But I’ve noticed that sometimes the problem is not so much with the preacher as it is with the hearer. If we’re not benefiting from the preaching, the fault may not always lie with the one doing the preaching. It may lie in our readiness to hear, to receive, and to respond to God’s Word.
The fact is that two people can listen to the very same message, and one can be bored and unmoved, and the other can be convicted and his life is transformed. Years ago after a sermon I preached on prayer I had a man tell me, “That one really didn’t do it for me.” I wasn’t sure what he meant, but I knew it wasn’t a compliment. Exactly two minutes later, a woman came to me in tears thanking me for the powerful sermon. She told me, “It was exactly what I needed in my life today.” What made the difference? I’m not sure, but here are 10 things that might help you get the most out the sermon…
- Come excited about getting a word from God.
- Start and end the sermon by praying and asking God to speak to you today though the speaker.
- Focus on what’s being said, not on what’s going on around you.
- Take notes.
- Follow along in your Bible.
- Look for applications that you can make in your own life.
- Expect to get something good from the lesson.
- Don’t be critical.
- Open your heart and mind.
- Expect a spiritual feast. Hopefully the preacher where you attend will have a table full of spiritual food. Hopefully he will present the bread of life. And hopefully you will eat a great spiritual meal. But you must apply it, study your Bible, pray during the week, get involved and dig deeper with others. If you can’t help feed yourself … then a church will never be able to “feed you.” Get your own spiritual fork, and learn to feed yourself some. Serve. Pray. Practically apply the Bible to your life everyday.
Now get out there and enjoy a great message from God this Sunday!
There’s a new sermon available on the sermon page if you’re interested …. “What Jesus thinks about our worrying!”