Most Pastors don’t preach 52 weeks a year, nor should they in my opinion.
The reason is because it’s not possible for a Pastor to hit 52 home runs a year. Plus, a Pastor should be grooming and raising up other teachers who are gifted and need to express their gift.
A healthy church needs to have more than one voice. It needs to have a few voices that can speak into the lives of the congregation in the power of the Holy Spirit.
So what should a Pastor do to introduce these other gifted communicators? 5 things:
1. Decide what Sundays you aren’t going to teach – Plan those in advance and don’t change your mind. This way you give your speakers plenty of advance notice.
2. Assign topics or passages of Scripture they are strong in (that you may not be) – Before becoming a dad, I never taught on parenting. But because parenting is atopic our church needs to hear about, I’d have other speakers teach on topics like parenting when I wasn’t there.
3. Try them out on low attended Sundays – The Sunday after Thanksgiving or Memorial Day weekend used to be the Sundays every new teacher got first at our church. I still use low attended Sunday to ‘break a new teacher in’. It’s good because with a lighter crowd the pressure is lower and they can makes mistakes without scaring too many people away if the message goes south 🙂
4. Listen to their messages – I try to listen to every message that’s given from my pulpit. It’s my responsibility to make sure that what’s being taught is quality, so I listen carefully and then share my thoughts with whichever staff member taught.
5. Give feedback in advance – Everyone who teaches gives their message in advance to our Pastoral staff. We listen, evaluate, encourage, and give feedback so they can tweak their message to take it from good to great. This is usually tough (most of our staff say it’s harder than giving the message on Sunday), but it pays huge dividends if you take the time to do it.
Tomorrow I’ll share one final thought about your preaching calendar…