If you’re wondering if God is calling you to be a preacher, Judah Smith suggests you ask yourself three questions: Do you love people, do you have the gift of preaching and can you be yourself behind a pulpit?
Smith puts it this way, “If you love people and you have the gift to preach and you’re yourself, you’re gonna be great.”
But miss any one of those elements and you might want to rethink a future in the pulpit.
“If you don’t have the gift to preach and you love people and you’re yourself, but you don’t have the gift to preach, don’t preach. Do something else.” Smith adds, “I can’t urge people enough, if you aren’t called to preach just be ok with that. There are so many better things you can do with your life.”
For those who are called but looking to improve their skills, Smith recommends trial and error and allowing time for growth.
Smith said, “I shudder to think of the stuff I preached before. I was on a plane recently and listened to a message I preached back in 2005, I didn’t like that at all.”
But he says stick with it because if you have the gift of preaching it will take care of itself.
Smith, known for his humorous, disarming and highly engaging preaching style, had a few other insights into his preparations and vision for how he preaches in a ChurchLeaders podcast; “I’m like a tour guide. I want to take people on a tour. It’s like taking people through a forest. I don’t have points, I have markers because without them I might get lost.”
All of his sermons follow seven steps:
- Read the Bible
- Introduction to message
- Transition statement that relates to the message
- Conclusion including call to respond.