Preaching Articles

People often ask how I prepare to preach on Sunday mornings. Ultimately, it’s all about Jesus, but I realize I have a responsibility as a shepherd to do all I can to be prepared. Ideally I try to be completely finished with my sermon Friday, so I can take Saturday off. Sometimes I’ll spend an hour or so on Saturday doing one final edit. I try to limit my activities and get a good night’s rest Saturday night. I almost never work on my message on Sunday morning.

I do, however, have some Sunday morning routines, which help me best prepare.

Here are 5 ways I prepare best on Sunday mornings:

1. Read something in the Bible other than the passage I’m preaching on

I want to feed myself before I try to teach others. I usually am reading through the Bible and I continue this on Sunday mornings.

2. Pray

I spend longer than other mornings in prayer on Sunday mornings. It prepares my heart. I pray for those who will be in attendance and those who may still be debating attending. I pray for God’s presence to be with us. I pray for other leaders in the church. I seek a sense of oneness with God’s heart to mine.

3. Exercise

I don’t get to every Sunday, but when I do get to exercise, I am more mentally alert and physically prepared than when I don’t.

4. Worship

Ideally, I love to put the Sunday morning line up of worship music in a playlist and allow the music to lead me in worship. Either way, I find a time to worship on Sunday mornings. When I’ve made much of God before I get to church, I find I’m better able to make much of Him.

5. Pray

Just before I preach I have a fairly standard prayer. It goes something like this, “God, I can’t do this. You know I’m not worthy to speak on Your behalf. You know and I know that it’s only by Your grace I can be here this morning. If You don’t show up, today will be meaningless.”

That’s how I prepare on Sundays.

How do you do it, pastor?

Ron Edmondson is a pastor and church leader passionate about planting churches, helping established churches thrive, and assisting pastors and those in ministry think through leadership, strategy and life. Ron has over 20 years of business experience, mostly as a self-employed business owner, and he's been in full-time ministry for over eight years.  

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Joe Mckeever

commented on Oct 3, 2015

Love this, Ron. -- My problem with "finishing" the sermon by Friday (or whenever) is that it keeps evolving in my mind. That's why I could never turn in sermon notes a few days in advance. Eventually, the preached message would be different from the notes.

Emmanuel Paul

commented on Oct 3, 2015

I have the same issue with putting an end to my sermon. At my church I only have 20 minutes to deliver my message. Does any one have a best practice they are using.

Emmanuel Paul

commented on Oct 3, 2015

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