One of the questions I'm often asked, both inside and outside our church is: "Where do you guys get your sermon series ideas?" Today, I'll unpack the answer to that question a bit.
1. What's important to God? What is important to God's heart and mission? These ideas drive our teaching calendar. Our five marks of a follower of Jesus are already pretty clear from God's Word: Spiritual Growth, Using our Gifts, Visionary Giving, and Greater Impact. God wants every Christian to grow consistently in these areas. These ideas from god;s heart largely drive our teaching calendar each year. We just need to figure out how to communicate them. We never allow creativity to drive what we teach on. We allow God to drive what we teach on.
2. What is God teaching me? I have come to realize that when God is speaking to me, He is not just speaking to me for my benefit. He wants to use what he's teaching me to teach others.
3. Where are the people? Scripture challenges church leaders to KNOW , PAY ATTENTION TO, and CARE for "the flock of God," the church. What are God's people dealing with or struggling with? What's missing in their lives? What's needed in their lives? What do God's people need to know RIGHT NOW? These go near the top of what God has us teach on.
4. WHEN should this be taught? Once we begin to put together WHAT God wants us to teach on, we THEN begin to discuss WHEN during the year would be the best time to share this with God's people? Our worship planning process helps us accomplish this. I'll discuss this in more detail tomorrow.
Stay tuned for pt. 2 of this post!