24 Preaching Secrets from 5 of the Best Preachers in North America

Preaching Secrets From Carey Nieuwhof

Carey Nieuwhof, founding pastor of multi-site Connexus community Church near Toronto, reveals his secrets to preaching in his article “5 Tips That Will Definitely Make You a Better Communicator.”

Don’t memorize your talk; understand it.

Memorizing a talk is extremely difficult. Especially a longer talk. I personally find that trying to recall a memorized talk stilts your delivery because you can’t focus on the moment.

Begin writing your talk weeks in advance.

I’m working on a series I’m delivering two months from now. I’ve even got most of the bottom lines developed for the series and I’ll flesh out most of the messages in detail two to three weeks before I preach them. My guess is that by the time I deliver the first message, the series will already feel like an old friend.

Include at least one self-deprecating story.

If you want to build rapport with your audience, show them your weaknesses, not just your strengths… People may admire your strengths, but they resonate with your weaknesses.

Pay attention to the logical flow of your talk.

Your talk should have a beginning, middle and end, and each section should be logically and sequentially related.

Speak with double your normal energy during delivery.

It’s going to feel weird at first, but it’s vital. Speaking in normal conversational tones when you have a microphone in your hand actually makes you sound boring. So double your energy.

Preaching Secrets From Andy Stanley

Andy Stanley is a communicator, author and pastor who founded Atlanta-based North Point Ministries in 1995. TA survey of U.S. pastors in Outreach Magazine identified Andy Stanley as one of the top 10 most influential living pastors in America. Watch this video for more insights from Stanley.

Approach preaching by your goal in preaching.

You must answer the question: Why do I preach? What is it I want to have accomplished. Adjust your approach to your goal. Stanley says that the goal or preaching is to teach people how to live a life that reflects the values, principles and truths of the Bible.

Teach less for more. 

What are the “you gotta know ’em truths”? Change the presentation and say the same truths over and over again. You cover less, but you say more.

Preaching Secrets From Wayne Cordeiro

Wayne Cordeiro, is the founding pastor of New Hope Christian Fellowship in Honolulu, Hawaii, with over 11,500 in weekend attendance. Cordeiro reveals five secrets to “The New Normal of Preaching.”

Use more word pictures.

Word pictures help your listeners mentally track with you.

Let people interact with you.

Interaction is important to the new learners. Your listeners want to “talk back” to the communicator.

Use personal illustrations to underscore a truth.

New teachers teach not only out of their knowledge but also out of their scars.

Simplify without becoming remedial.

The world needs communicators who will help them understand the simplicity of God’s love and ways.

Take the time to explain things theologically.

People will no longer settle for pat answers. Loyalty to a denomination or to a body of pre-approved knowledge no longer exists. They are curious and want to know why.

Want even more preaching tips? Check out “30 Rules for the Hillsong Australia Preaching & Teaching Team.”

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Christine Yount Jones
Christine Yount Jones is Content Director for Outreach Media Group. She has published several books and hundreds of articles about ministry in the last three decades. Before his death in 2003, Michael Yount and Christine had three children. Now, she and her husband, Ray Jones, together have five grown kids.