How To Prepare – Leaving Room for the Spirit

Reverend Napoloeon Harris has been in the midst of a series on preparation for effective sermons. I am adding a few posts to that series and then Minister Harris will finish it up. In this article I want to empahsize the importance of leaving room for the Spirit in the preaching event.

The preacher should fully and totally prepare, but when it is time to preach, the preacher should not only depend on the preparation, but also must depend on the Holy Spirit to guide the preacher in what should and should not be said in the preaching moment. Brad Braxton always emphasized that the sermon is not what is written in the manuscript, but the sermon includes the mannerisms and gestures of the preacher. In addition, it includes the inflection and the emphasis placed at different places in the sermon. Finally, the sermon includes that which is added or taken away by the interaction of the Spirit, people, and preacher. Thus our preparation must include both making a way for the Spirit. In addition, the preparation would require our communion with the Spirit through Bible study and prayer.

So in our preparation we must get closer to the Spirit and we must make room for that same Spirit to show up in the preaching event.

Sherman Haywood Cox II

Vanderbilt Trained Minister (MDiv), Univ. of Alabama Trained Software Developer (MS), Author, Blogger (, Husband, Son, Brother, Father.

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