Several years ago, I heard about a preacher that prepared for his sermon in a unique way. One Sunday he was to preach on the Bread of Life text (John 6). He thought of a powerful way to help the sermon stick with his congregation. He had prepared for several church members to bring their bread machines to church earlier in the morning. Forgive me for not knowing how long bread takes to bake, but the group planned for their bread to be done by the time worship was done.
The result? People starting to get a smell during their worship. By the time the preacher began teaching about the Bread of Life, the smell of bread was unavoidable. Not in an intruding or overbearing way. Just enough to engage the senses. Who doesn’t love the smell of fresh bread? The preacher didn’t say anything. He didn’t draw attention to the smell. He didn’t have to.
Do you think his congregation remembers that sermon?
I have a love/hate feeling about that idea. I love it because it’s great! You might say it’s a pure bread idea. I hate it because it’s been about 10 years since I first heard that idea and I have yet to try it. I’ve thought about it numerous times, but never got around to it.
Know the feeling?
Here’s the good thing about never getting around to something. You can get around to it now.
Watch this video from The Ellen Show. As you do, pretend Ellen is the preacher, the audience is the congregation, the set is a church, the show is Sunday morning worship and the guy is your first-time guest.
Is there anything we can learn?
And please realize, more and more, “church” is something that more and more people haven’t “done.”
The hardest part about asking questions is waiting for answers.
Let me rephrase that. The hardest part about asking good questions is waiting for answers.
We are used to being rewarded for expediency. But if you’re trying to learn something, solve an issue or move forward you need time to ask questions. If you don’t create that time, you don’t really engage people’s creativity or knowledge. You merely put a question mark at the end of your statements, opinions or what you want to have happen. It’s hard to build a trusting, quality relationship within church (or anywhere else) like that.
So, ask good questions. And then wait for the answers.
You’re going to have be silent. You’ve managed to ask a good question. Now, you get to watch it work.
Stay out of the way of a good question. Wait for the answers.
Would this idea work for protecting our schools? I don’t know. But here’s why I love it. We need divine creativity to help address many of the issues we are facing as families, as a church and as a nation. It’s obvious we don’t have the solutions. Lord, forgive us for always assuming we do.
When we lead with divine creativity, we aren’t concerned with politics. We’re not putting blame on anyone. Divine creativity isn’t about being right. I’ts about actually making a God-change. We’re taking responsibility for what God wants us to accomplish.