How to Recapture the Crowd

LifeWay Pastors | 7/10/2018 | Guest Contributor
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You’re boring and everyone hates you…at least that is how it feels when you deviate far enough away from your sermon’s Scripture to lose the focus of your congregation. Your intentions were good: you were trying aright a theological wrong that you thought was prevalent (it was not), or trying to answer a question people were internally asking (they were not). The brief tangent you chased was interesting to you, but the sudden reflection of cell phone light against downward drifting faces indicates you were the only one to find it interesting. Even your wife took it as an opportunity to discreetly get on the wait list at Chili’s before the Methodists. Your time is short and you still have content to cover. The final verse of the passage is so critical to their lives and the stakes are so high. You must recapture their attention to the Bible, but how do you do it?

You look to your final point in your outline and then “interrupt” yourself with a personal story that builds a bridge to that final point.

Work - Crowd - Chili - Southwestern - Egg

I have seen this work. If the crowd has written you off and is already thinking about Chili’s Southwestern Egg Rolls, then you will likely not get them back at your current homiletical pace. Have the painful self-awareness to know that what you have been doing has not been communicating well and then make a change. Read the body language of the crowd and sense when they subtly indicate to you that your window of time to convey God’s Word is closing. Their minds are willing, but their bodies are weak, so make the absolute most of those final few minutes.

This can be painful because it often means skipping content that was precious to you. However, crowds do not usually exhibit his...
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