Making Last-Minute Sermon Prep Awesome

Pastorum SeriesIt’s 6:10 p.m. I have 20 minutes to finish my weekly sermon for a service that begins at 7 p.m. My sermon includes a bit about ancient culture, a few major points I want people to remember, and some questions I hope the congregation will ponder. But it still lacks punch. It’s missing some key elements: a strong quote, a moving prayer, a surprising statistic, and elegant slides to share them all. Although I’ve been pulled in every direction by life, school, and work this week, that won’t matter to my listeners. The people who have graciously allowed me their time won’t care why my sermon falls flat. They’ll only remember that it wasn’t worth their time. I need to solve this problem.

Moments like these are what prompted us to create the Pastorum Series. This collection includes a solid set of resources to make your preaching more effective and preempt sermon prep breakdowns.

If I used the Pastorum Series in a situation like this, I would easily be able to finish preparing my sermon in 20 minutes. Here’s what I would do:

1. I would search the Sermon Starter Guide for the passage I’m preaching on (from the Gospel of Mark 8:34–­9:1). Then I would choose a quote from one of the 1,800 now in my library. Since the Sermon Starter guide has now returned results for only resources with the correct preaching theme, which is Discipleship, I would know that every choice would be relevant.

Thomas Kempis

2. Using the same search results, I would choose a fitting prayer from 400 Prayers for Preachers. With two clicks, I could add it to my Proclaim presentation, just like I could for the quotation I just chose.

John Wesley

3. I would open the Study, Apply, Share volume to the passage I’m preaching on and glance through the statistical graphics. These slides are available for Mark, Luke, Philippians, Hebrews, and James; using them, I could easily regain the congregation’s attention if it had started to wander.

Themes in Gospels

4. I would take a look at the sermon ideas in Study, Apply, Share: Mark, and perhaps adapt one that’s appropriate for my message. I might also incorporate one of the several study questions as part of my discussion, or use it to transition into the next part of my sermon.

The Pastorum Series is well worth the money to become a more effective speaker. Now that the Pastorum Series Collection is available, I’ll be using this go-to resource the next time I preach. Will you?

Make sermon prep better than ever—download the Pastorum Series Collection today.

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5 Responses to “Making Last-Minute Sermon Prep Awesome”

  1. Ken May 30, 2013 at 2:58 pm #

    Where do you find the quotes and the prayers in the sermon prep guide.

    I have these resources but they are hard to find if you don’t know where to look.

    • Elliot Ritzema May 30, 2013 at 3:30 pm #

      Hi Ken,

      If you search by theme in the Sermon Starter Guide in Logos 5, you will see them show up under the tab “Preaching Resources.” Resources in that list are organized alphabetically with numbers at the top, so the 300 Quotations and 400 Prayers resources should be at or close to the top.

      • Ken June 4, 2013 at 5:36 am #

        I am using Logos 5, (Logos Bible Software 5.0b SR-4 (5.0.2.0755)) and in the Sermon Starter Guide, I do not see a tab called “preaching resources” I do not even see it as a tab that can be added.

        • Elliot Ritzema June 4, 2013 at 7:31 am #

          Which base package do you have? “Preaching Resources” relies on a data set called Preaching Themes, which is included with Bronze base packages and up (as well as the Minimal Crossgrade). If you have a base package that includes Preaching Themes, then I would suggest calling Customer Support. They will be able to sort things out much better than I am able to.

        • DeWayne June 6, 2013 at 5:09 am #

          I didn’t see it either until I typed in a scripture passage.