Wednesday, October 24, 2012

1 Powerful Question Trumps Pages of Pithy Statements

The Bible calls us to teach in church. It's a core purpose of the church. But the Bible doesn't mandate a particular method of teaching. Content, yes. But it leaves a lot of room for us be creative and strategic about how we teach.

The simplest and most basic method of teaching is to tell them the info you want them to know. It's also the least fruitful approach. There's nothing wrong, per se, with a consistent 30-fold harvest from your efforts. But if you could get 100-fold harvest, then why would you settle for 30-fold?

One method shift that will enhance the impact of your teaching is to craft powerful teaching questions, not just statements.

A typical pastor spends 10-20 hours each week crafting messages. And about .05% of that time (in my totally unscientific evaluation) is spent on crafting questions. Hours and hours are spent on getting the right sentences--distilling life changing principles into memorable and meaningful statements.

Don't get me wrong, I love doing that. I believe how you say it matters. I won't post on this or my other blog until I've spent a lot of effort crafting powerful statements.

But leading a member-driven church has shown me that one powerful question stimulates more growth than pages of pithy statements. I do prepare an intro and an ending for the teaching time at our church. But most weeks the core of our 45 min study time is a set of 3-5 questions. And those questions consistently spark deeper conversation and learning than I get by talking alone.

Let me take my own advice: Think back about experiences in your life that you have learned the most from--what do they have in common? Seriously, take a moment and create a list--even if just a mental one.

What themes do you see? What's the most common type of experience? Who else was involved? What was your posture (i.e. mental attitude, physical situation, etc)?

How can you recreate these kind of experiences (and similar levels of learning) in your church?

No comments:

Post a Comment