Sermon Stretchers

In seminary we committed ourselves to studying one hour for each minute in the pulpit. It seemed only right.

When we got to our first church, however, we learned that unwittingly we had also signed on to handle office flow, plan worship, visit hospitals, lead weddings and funerals, and keep committees on track-not to mention "saying a few words" to assorted classes, clubs, and social occasions. Oh, I nearly forgot, we're also supposed to find time for our families.

Our hour of study for each minute of sermon? Unfortunately, most of our congregations want sermons longer than three minutes.

Here, then, for the overextended preacher, are some all-purpose sermon stretchers. Use these, and any sermon, no matter how short, will begin to expand to the fully desired length.

1. Stretch one idea into a three-point message. Studies have shown that after hearing a three-point sermon, most people remember only one point. So why waste two perfectly good ideas on the forgetful? If you have time to think ...

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