Understanding The Struggle

Some preachers preach a message that demonstrate that they are disconnected from the pressures and pains of the lives of their congregants. No doubt being a pastor has unique challenges, but some preachers are not able to translate their own struggles into something that can be useful to the congregation.

There are some preachers who in the vernacular are all in our Kool Aid and know the flavor, but then there are others who seem to never quite get to our street. Instead of understanding the people, they are separate from them.

What Connection to the People Can Mean

When you are connected to the struggles of people you are less likely to take an approach that looks down on others. When you understand the struggles you are more likely to recognize the difficulty of living a life true to principle in this world. You will still teach the truth, but as one who struggles following the truth yourself.

One preacher broke this rule when he told the people it was none of their business whether the pastor tithe’s or not. He then preached a sermon lambasting the people for not tithing. When you understand the struggles of the people you are less likely to put up a false separation between you and the people. You are less likely to think that you got “some kind-a holy” that makes you “more holy” than your people.

Can You Know the Good News Without Understanding the Bad?

People come to church to hear that there is good news even in this world that can look pretty dismal at times, if you can’t understand how dismal that world is, then you can’t understand the depths of the Gospel. Stated another way, if you don’t understand your people’s struggles, then why are you preaching?

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Sherman Haywood Cox II

Sherman Haywood Cox II is the director of Soul Preaching. He holds the M.Div with an emphasis in Homiletics and a M.S. in Computer Science.

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