Have you ever heard someone speak and knew the audience was walking away with a “3 B” situation? Bored. Baffled. Bothered.
Me too. I just hate it because with everything in me I want the speaker to move the audience into “3 I” situation. Inspired. Influenced. Ignited.
I have sympathy for the speaker because I’ve been there. And there’s nothing worse than to be knee deep in a message and start clearly discerning, “this ain’t working.” And whether you’re a speaker or not- don’t we all want our words to connect?
When teaching a life lesson to our kids.
Making a presentation at work.
Teaching a class at church.
Leading a Bible Study.
Delivering well wishes at your friend’s wedding reception.
For the past year, I’ve been studying the fine art of delivering messages that inspire (move my mind), influence (move my heart) and ignite (move my soul).
And if you were to ask me to boil down all I’ve learned into one word, I’d say it’s MOVEMENT. Great speakers move people. They move minds to think and engage more deeply. They move hearts to soften and get honest. They move souls to a new kind of action or reaction.
Of course there is much more that needs to happen to make a successful message. But without movement a message is stagnant. Stagnant messages make the audience wish Jesus would come back or the fire alarm would go off. At least then, they could move.
So, how do we create messages that move? We build them like a wheel, not a tower.
Most people build their message outlines in a tower-like fashion. There are layers of points stacked one on top of the other. But let’s be honest, people don’t remember lots of points. We audience members have foggy brains full of Walmart and grocery lists and what the kids have going on tomorrow and why did my husband say that this morning- thoughts. So many, many thoughts.
And so little room for a bunch of points.
Speakers who have mastered the art of movement, don’t make a bunch of points. They make one really sticky point. A point that’s been crafted, honed, prayed over, thought through and intentionally designed to bump into the audience’s felt need.
That one sticky point becomes the hub of a wheel. Then within the message there are spokes extending out of the sticky hub in the form of related stories, Bible verses, and relevant teaching. And what do wheels do? They move.
Tomorrow, I’ll talk a little more about coming up with that one sticky point. (Even in a conversation with a child. Yes- it’s possible and powerful!)
In the meantime, have you heard a message recently where the speaker, teacher, or pastor crafted their message the way I’m describing? What was their one sticky point?
And if you’ve been put in a position to speak recently, what was your biggest struggle?
Leave a comment today and I’ll pick three of you to win a message I gave recently at She Speaks on this topic.
Congrats to the winners of the book giveaway from yesterday! Please email Holly@Proverbs31.org to receive your book. Kayse, Kathy Burttram, Marcella Guarin, Jenny Cygan, and Janice Davis.