People always point out my spelling! They are programmed to read to see if I have misspelled a word in my sermon outline or the church bulletin or on this Blogger.
They have Obsessive Compulsive Find Misspelling Disorder. They can't read without looking for misspelled words. Really.
What I learned, just because something is grammatically correct and correctly spelled is not necessarily well written communication.
Example: Ever tried to read government memos, or the guarantee for your new digital
refrigerator. The grammar and spelling are OK, BUT THE COMMUNICATION IS LOUSY.
It's been mentioned that I would most likely not be an acceptable preacher in a certain church where there were a number of teachers in the membership.
Since I am very aware of this weakness in grammar and spelling and pronouncing words, a lot of times this affects my preaching ability.
Of course I have learned my writing is different from my preaching. And that my preaching is not necessarily good if I preach like I write. Think of that.
Now I want to speak correctly and spell correctly of course; but if I don't, it doesn't mean I am not preaching well nor writing well. Really! Cool, huh.
So I am reading some articles on this issue before us today. What is good preaching and what is good writing?
Some tell us that short sermons are better sermons. Remember the saying of Mark Twain on the Dec 12 post: “Few sinners are saved after the first 20 minutes of a sermon.” And I totally disagreed with that statement. I went off on that statement.
So I ask myself, what makes a good sermon, and what makes good communication?
You know, this was not a course in Seminary. I was never asked to read any books that would help me be a better communicator. I don't believe I was asked to read any book on preaching! While I read books that the teachers were using, I don't remember reading other books that were suggested by the teachers.
So what is good and clear communication? The technical term that professional writers use is "what puts a noise in the signal?"
And since I write out my sermons, I am writing what I want to say when preach. I would not necessarily preach what I write, but in both cases I want to communicate clearly what I want to say, and say what people will read and listen when I preach. I know -- shorter sermons, and no misspelled words in the outline and speak grammatically correct. Right? Of course it helps with those who have that disorder.
- Communication involves more than the content of the statements you make. People who focus primarily on information when they converse will often be viewed as arrogant and uncaring. Conversely, others who tend to focus on social niceties at the expense of useful information may be viewed as boring and irrelevant. Successful managers are perceived by others to be competent and good colleagues when they are able to converse in a way that establishes a social connection while passing on useful and accurate information.
- The task is to learn to have right information said in a conversable way that will connect with those to whom you are speaking. What a task this is. At least for me.