Back again with Danielle Strickland and Krish Kandiah.

Authentic Communication – Danielle

We’re watching the TED video by Elizabeth Gilbert.

There are skills we need, we need to just go for it, like Donald Miller who just gets on at 9am and writes – he doesn’t worry about what he’s writing.

Practical Communication – Krish

Living with young people allows culture to shape you but equally living in the text, eat this word, again allowing it to become who you are – your life becomes a living embodiment`.  It’s a wrestling process.

Process is an individual thing but Krish will share some of his ways.

Those who do it week in, week out have it much harder as they have to do lots of preparing whereas an itinerant preacher only has to do a few sessions.

Start on Monday trying to get your head into the passage.  Maybe for your quiet time that week you’ll meditate on the passage – maybe putting it on a CD playing it over and over again, maybe trying to memorise it, printing it out and highlighting key things.  At this stage you might want to use a commentary:

  • Skint: New Bible Commentary by IVP
  • More money: IVP Digital Reference Library – zero shelf space and easy to search!

Trying to find some handles to express the passage – one or two key points – normally one per 10 minutes.

When you have a handle you might want to think about illustrations.  They’re hard to find so keep ripping them and storing them ready to use for a future occasion.

As you get to Friday you’re trying to get your message pulled together.  Many of the best speakers have no notes – there’s a great clip of Danielle from Soul Survivor on GodTV.  Someone challenged Krish: “If you can’t remember your talk then why should someone else” – read How to preach without notes.  Look at maybe using key prompts – maybe a script or a PowerPoint becomes a prompt, or maybe hook it around different stories that you know well and then work on some links.  To get better just speak shorter.  If you have to have notes make them minimal – key bullet points.

2 Timothy is Paul’s notes to a young preacher.  A great example of an illustration is 2 Timothy 1:6 – fan into flame – linking it to a bonfire with young people and the process of lighting that.

A few things to help improve you:

1.     Find a mentor – either live or record yourself and send them video for them to critique.  Krish had great feedback as a young person when he first preached about his great passion and eye contact, and then challenged to slow down.  Because he gave loving feedback Krish sought him again and again for feedback.

2.     On the back of team feedback give space for young people to critique you and for them to speak and for you to critique them.

Visuals and technology: if you’re strong in them use it, it helps us to connect, trying to do it in an interactive way.  Sometimes it can become cumbersome and you end up steering clips around the talk.

Try using facebook & twitter to get illustrations, stories, and questions/ideas that sermon can deliver – crowd sourcing or even get people to sum up the sermon as a tweet in 140 characters.

Further Reading

  • Bible Fresh
  • Shaped by the Story is about a journey of just teaching the bible passage and then asking questions together about it – allows them to keep asking questions and thinking about a passage
  • How to read the Bible for all its worth
  • The Blue Parakeet
  • The Goldsworthy Trilogy

If you can link the work of your church with the teaching it strengthens people’s thinking and not just a God slot tapped on the end.


How did you prepare the Bam Bam sermon?  Danielle: started speaking without notes when he forgot her notes.  The sermon itself came to life in a jet lagged, unwell day where the Holy Spirit showed up.

How can we ask better questions? Krish: practice – be aware of life and just keep trying.

In relation to finding new ways to communicate with people, what happens when people use news forms of communication but have to transition into adult church?  Danielle: start new churches!  Krish: but saw a seminar entitled church planting is for wimps – it’s easier to start something new so sometimes we need to persevere and transform traditional church.  Bible Fresh is encouraging leaders to be re-trained in the same way a doctor would be regularly trained so our preachers and ministers need that.

Danielle your delivery style is fun, e.g. poking fun at men!  Do people ask you to take it more seriously?  Danielle: I don’t get invited to those places!  Not very often, the trick too is to be faithful to the text as you keep people with you.  Also it’s Danielle’s personality which again keeps it authentic.

Is there a technique to engage with a wide age-range, e.g. 8-16 year olds?  Krish: it’s really difficult, it’s easier to speak to a segmented age-range.  Jesus seemed to be the master of this, the story form is probably the easiest way in.  You can do it with all-ages, e.g. parables or Old Testament stories.

Married to the amazing Sarah and raising Jakey, Daniel, Amelia, Josh & Jonah in our blended family. Passionate for Jesus, social work & sport.

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