Ever feel like your sermon doesn’t live beyond your church’s parking lot?
If so, then join the club.
Many pastors express frustration from not being able to connect their sermon with their congregation. At times, it can feel like the sermon you spent 10-18 hours preparing didn’t even make a dent in someone’s life.
From lunchtime hunger pains, everyday stress, and mobile phones, as a pastor, you’re competing against several significant distractions. Besides, some studies suggest that our attention span is worse than a goldfish.
In overcoming these challenges, one key many pastors have found helpful in maintaining the attention of their congregation is to provide easy ways for them to follow along. Examples of this tactic can include printed outlines, PowerPoint slides, or a note section in the church’s bulletin.
Today, some of these tactics are proving less effective. Instead of looking at a PowerPoint slide or a printed handout, a lot of people are opting to use their phone or tablet instead.
To help you better engage your congregation in ways that are becoming more natural for them, we’ve pumped up our Church App by rolling out huge updates to our Interactive Sermon Notes.
Many church leaders expressed an interest in additional features, and our team has been hard at work behind the scenes the past several months to make this happen. Today, we’re excited to share with you four significant updates.
#1. Lead your listeners to interact with your sermon
Want to help your listeners follow along with you during your sermon?
With this latest round of updates, your congregation will be able to take notes or fill-in-the-blanks of an outline you create for them to use. Leading your listeners to interact with your message is a great way to keep their attention, and help them to retain your message.
To help your congregation engage with your church app during your sermon, Frank Barry, our COO, suggests asking people, dare I say, use their phone in church. He encourages pastors to say something like, “If you're following along and want to take notes, pull out your phone and open up the church app, my outline is ready for you to take notes on."
When you use Interactive Sermon Notes, make sure to let your church know it’s available for them to use.
#2. Help your church build community
How often have you wanted to share a thought with someone after a worship service?
There are many times when we’ll be able to share what we’re thinking with someone face-to-face, but there are other times when the idea hits us later. Either way, we’ve made it easy for your church to share their notes with their family and friends.
Now, your app users can save their notes directly on their phone or email them to someone else to talk through your sermon. When you email your notes, you’ll be able to create an attached PDF of your notes, which looks fantastic.
#3. Choose your preferred Bible version
With the recent updates, you now can choose from among 17 Bible translations, including the English Standard Version (ESV), King James Version (KJV), New International Version (NIV), and the New King James Version (NKJV).
Now, whenever you include a Bible reference in your sermon notes, such as Genesis 1:1, the scripture will appear like a hyperlink (kind of like this example). So, when someone touches the verse you reference in your outline, it will display the passage of the Bible version you choose in a popup window.
#4. Use emojis 👍🏻
Many people—especially millennials—like to use emojis to capture their thoughts or share their feelings. So we thought it would be a good idea to let people use emojis when taking notes to help them remember what they were experiencing during your sermon.
By the way, this feature is arguably our COO’s favorite addition to sermon notes. 😀
At Tithe.ly, we believe in the essential role preaching plays in the life of the local church. Preaching is one of the primary ways God reveals himself to people. This is why we love to support the work of local churches around the world with online giving, mobile giving, and digital tools church leaders can use to engage their congregation in relevant ways.
Looking for more sermon writing resources for pastors?
We've got you covered.
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