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Communication Is What We DO

This post is a bit of a rant, but not a mean one. I spend a LOT of time on the phone and on the internet connecting with church leaders. I've observed, in the wild, the communications strategies of hundreds of churches, and I keep noticing that the very basic principles of messaging and communication are often missed. Let me give you some examples of what I mean... I see church websites that are poorly designed. It isn't just aesthetics, which on the whole tend to be a …

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I Agree With Phil Cooke – Design Is the Language of This Generation

[adsense_id="1"] Yes! Amen! Preach it, brother Phil!! Design is the language of this generation whether we're ready for it or not. There's a reason why I'm very passionate about the communication strategies adopted by the church and it is that we have the best content possible - the gospel, but often the worst framing for it! Listen to what Phil Cooke says... ...today, we live in a design culture, and form has become a critical key to connecting with the public. So …

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Three Big Words to Shape Your Communications Strategy

There are plenty of big words to throw around when it comes to communications, but three have been rattling around in my head all day... Cohesive It's not that all of your messaging has to be the same, it's that your voice needs to be one voice. Each piece of your approach should interweave and support all of the other pieces. We used to talk more about brand consistency. Now add to that messaging consistency. It's tough to do this when we think from a new and open …

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What Sets Preaching Apart from Other Public Speaking?

My favorite classes at Western Kentucky University weren't the Religious Studies courses (my major), or even the History courses (my minor). My favorite classes were in the area of speech and professional communication (what I wish had been my major). I grew up super-shy like almost every other Pastor I know, but have grown to love speaking to crowds of people. I'm a student of public speaking, in fact. But when I enter the pulpit to preach on Sundays, something is …

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Hey Pastor, Can You Translate This Message?

You can't undervalue truth and content in a message, but you can fail to drive it home if you can't translate it. consider this thought from Making a Difference in Preaching: Haddon Robinson on Biblical Preaching... Spurgeon was right: the people in the marketplace cannot learn the language of the academy, so the people in the academy must learn the language of the marketplace. It's the pastor's job to translate... …

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Boring Preaching Is A Crime

No, this is not a post about the loss of our religious freedom - it's a reflection on a quote I've looked at many times since I first wrote it down about nine years ago at a conference on preaching... If you think the gathering of biblical facts and standing up with a Bible in your hand will automatically equip you to communicate well, you are desperately mistaken. It will not. You must work at being interesting. Boredom is a gross violation, being dull is a grave offense, …

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Speak Clearly, Or Not At All

Consider... A scrutinized vessel never exceeds the point of 212 degrees Fahrenheit. versus... A watched pot never boils. The goal of communication is to communicate, not to confuse. It's easy for our message to get clouded by the words we choose, or the particular mixture thereof. Am I being clear? Perhaps Phil Cooke explains it better, or, more clearly. …

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Pastors: Don’t Forget to Sharpen Your Public Speaking Skills

Pastors have a bad habit of forgetting that we are ultimately communicators. We fall into the pattern of preaching and presenting God's Word the way we always have, or the way other preachers always have. That's why we get made fun of! That's also one of the reasons people don't listen to us. In addition to studying God's Word deeply and serving people all week, we also need to become students of the arts of persuasion, communication, and public speaking. If you can't …

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Don't Just Inform Me, Inspire Me

Remember the good old days when we were talking about the web ushering in the "age of information?" We even called it the "information superhighway." Now, it's becoming much more of a social structure all its own, but the information certainly has not decreased. There's still a ton of it! A century ago, you could barely keep up because of a lack of information sources. Now we have a hard time keeping up because of a plethora of them. So how do you get my attention in the …

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Overcoming the Fear of Public Speaking

The title of this post is attention-getting for an obvious reason - most people fear the thought of standing before a group of people and speaking... out loud. I was too, and still am to some degree. When I was a kid, I was painfully and awkwardly shy. In the fifth grade, I had to give an oral report on the life of Will Rogers. I handled it by self-interviewing. I sat in the teacher's chair and rolled left and right, pretending to be Will Rogers on one side, and something of …

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