The Homiletics Online Blog

Homiletics Online Addressing Loneliness Hero Image

The first week of the New Year is often a time to take a breath and relax. Autumn was full of excitement with fall festivals, trips to the orchard and pumpkin-spice everything. We were still enjoying Thanksgiving leftovers when Advent ushered in the magic and joy of Christmas, with events nearly every day in December. And we probably stayed up too late on New…

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Outdoor Christmas lighting display

Tell me we live in a post-Christian era or a post-Christian culture and I will agree with you with one proviso: Let’s not talk about the weeks between Thanksgiving and December 25. During these roughly four weeks, the United States is anything but a post-Christian culture. It’s a decidedly Christian one. How do I know…

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Waiting for Some Joe

Four empty coffee mugs and one partially filled mug

One of my daily rituals is pulling into my favorite coffee shop first thing in the morning for a quick cup to go. It’s the kind of place that has those pump pots all lined up on the counter with exotic names and flavors aplenty, but I’m a creature of habit so I always get…

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Give ’til You Giggle

Donation Received 940x705

Fall is part of that time on the church calendar known as ‘common’ or ‘ordinary’ time, but if your church is like a lot of others, there’s a good chance you’re also getting ready to celebrate the most important unofficial season of the church year. I’m referring, of course, to stewardship season — the roll-out…

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September 11th Adult Sunday School Lesson Featured Image

The 20th anniversary of 9/11 is an important and somber observance for Americans and others. It can be an emotional and tough topic to cover, so we at Homiletics Online are glad to be able to work with the editorial team at The Wired Word and share with you this special 9/11 Patriot Day edition…

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The Why And The What Of Sermon Writing 940x705

How to Help Your Congregation Chew Their Food  By Timothy Merrill  Everyone except the preacher seems to agree that a good sermon’s most appealing attribute is brevity. Hands down. The late comedian George Burns once said, cigar in hand, that “the secret of a good sermon is to have a good beginning and a good…

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NASCAR Ministry

NASCAR Ministry 940x705

One of my guilty pleasures this time of year is to go home on Sunday afternoon after a long morning of services, plop down on the couch and turn on — oh, how I hate to admit this — the NASCAR race of the week. That’s right, I really do enjoy watching 30-some cars do…

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How to Hear a Sermon

Pastor Worshipping

With summer finally here, a lot of us preachers will be heading out on vacation … or at least we should be! That means you may have an opportunity to sit in someone else’s church and hear them preach during your time away. It’s not always an easy thing to do for those of us…

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Wood sign hanging off of a door knob that says "welcome, we are open"

I ran across a handout that was distributed to participants in a weekend seminar dealing with issues of conflict resolution, group communication dynamics and the like. The two-page handout was an excerpt from a book written by Margaret J. Wheatley called Turning to One Another: Simple Conversations to Restore Hope to the Future (San Francisco:…

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Could Jesus Be A 21st Century Pastor

I recently had one of those days that invariably happen to those of us in ministry. You know, the kind of day that makes you wonder whether working in a salt mine would be a much more pleasant profession. It was filled with contentious meetings, building issues, a renegade committee leader, a nasty e-mail, the…

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