Graphics play a huge role in the world around us today; they are everywhere! But one of the places where they are long overdue is in the area of teaching. A picture is worth a thousand words. Graphics provide an engaging alternative to text-only descriptions. Graphics not only make things more understandable, they make them more memorable.
Writing and speaking by themselves often are insufficient to really anchor something in our memories. Imagine that I have preached the standard 30 minute sermon with main points (alliterated, of course!). Prudence demands that I reiterate the big ideas before concluding, right? If I have a graphic associated with each point, including the graphic in my summary helps people call to mind the relevant information. They recall far more of what was said compared to using only a verbal summary.
Here’s what I mean. In the Philippians volume of the High Definition Commentary, 2:1-2 opens with a series of “if” statements designed to make us agree to do whatever it is that Paul is going to ask of us at the end: “If A is true, if B is true, if C is true, then we are compelled to do D.”
This is followed by another main point about how critical it is for us not just to look out for our own interests, but also for the interests of others. Only by doing both these things can we expect to truly experience like-mindedness.
Moving to the application
So what do I do when it comes time to end the message? Incorporating the graphics into my application saves time and unnecessary repetition to remind people of key ideas. It increases the “stickiness” of my points. The most important information is associated with the graphic, making it easier to recall the next time people see it. Graphics can do a lot more than just help make your teaching more interesting. They can simplify the complex and make the important more memorable.
Custom-designed infographics are a hallmark of the High Definition Commentary series. This series not only helps you track the writer’s flow and big ideas, it helps you clearly communicate what you have found to those who have not put in the hours of preparation that you have. The High Definition Commentary: Philippians ships Friday, April 15, so act quickly to pick it up at the Pre-Pub price point!