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Silent Sermon

(Original photo here)

I’ve posted many times questioning the effectiveness of preaching before, however this past Sunday was definitely an example of working more creatively, not harder, while creating a deeply meaningful experience.

I’ve been wanting to experiment with this for quite a while now, and with my voice blown from speaking the night before, this was the perfect opportunity (also great when you’re in a time crunch)

All we did was set up the projector and I typed on the screen in silence. Stacks of paper squares were handed out and the community was invited to write whatever the Spirit of God was putting on their hearts – Scripture, questions, prayers, struggles, insights, confessions, commitments, etc. … that’s it.

It was a great collective and collaborative experience. I didn’t filter anything, and what was shared was so much more profound than anything I would have preached. The more ‘quiet’ members of the community also felt encouraged and liberated to voice what God had been speaking into their souls through this venue.

Sometimes we just need to get out of the way.

{ 9 comments… add one }

  • Christi February 21, 2008, 10:15 am

    What a great idea. Love it! That is when I hear God the most…when it is quiet without all the distractions.

  • Marty February 21, 2008, 11:43 am

    This made me even more excited for your visit! Please know we are praying for you as a community.

  • aaron February 22, 2008, 7:02 am

    that is “church”
    thank you!

  • Lon February 23, 2008, 1:48 pm

    Thanks for the feedback!

    Marty, I can’t wait!

  • russ February 23, 2008, 7:51 pm

    A stunning photo and it would be an excellent place to sit and contemplate life in quietness.

  • Yu February 25, 2008, 10:28 pm

    very much a preaching beyond speaching approach. I love it.

    Did you find that you had to filter anything?

    On the flip side, I had to preach for the first time at my own church. The general comments were positive, and a few key friends/relatives thot I shouldve pushed even further on my topic (faith and deeds – James 2).

    Still, there are always the occasional ‘uncle/auntie’ types who’s only comment is that I should wear a tie along with my shirt 😛

  • Lon February 27, 2008, 8:19 am

    Hey Yu, no, no filtering. other than some people ended up drawing pictures.. which i couldn’t really duplicate.

    congrats on the sermon, i read about it on your blog. I’d love to have a listen!

  • wilsonian March 26, 2009, 7:14 pm

    Love this. So much. I’ve found even in corporate prayer, most people are afraid of silence. Every space must be filled with voice, or it’s wrapped up in a bow and declared finished. I long to just be in silence, listening, with a group of believers.

  • Lon March 27, 2009, 7:10 am

    thanks for the comment wilsonnian, glad you enjoyed it. And yes, I too long for silence, but something for some reason I keep choosing noise…

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