Recently, I wrote Developing the Preaching Gift where I listed five steps I am taking to grow as a communicator. One of the steps is to (periodically) review Communicating for a Change by Andy Stanley and Lane Jones (for more on this book, see my post, One-Point Preaching).
I am in the process of reviewing the book now. At one point, Andy Stanley shares his dad’s perspective on preaching. Charles Stanley says …
You’ve got to have a burden. That’s the thing most preachers are missing. A burden. If they don’t have a burden it’s just a bunch of fluff. (113)
Andy says “you can tell when a communicator is carrying a burden versus when he (or she) is simply dispensing information” (113).
Andy notes that the key to finding your burden is by answering the questions, “What is the one thing I must communicate? What is it that people have to know?” (114).
The benefit of having a burden is that it “brings passion to preaching. It transforms lifeless theology into compelling truth” (114).
I’ve preached sermons where it felt like I had a burden. I’ve also preached sermons where it felt like all I was doing was dispensing information. I much prefer preaching with the preacher’s burden!