Here’s the feedback on the sermons.
Overwhelmingly, the focus on teaching, digging into, and applying the Bible is important to our congregation, and we are hitting the mark for the vast majority.
It was fun to get so many comments regarding the quality of our teaching team.
There seemed to me to be more comments than usual about the clarity and delivery of the sermons. That’s something we’ve really been working on, so I’m happy to see it.
One suggestion was made to read the whole passage at once without interruptions before digging in and reading smaller sections for exposition. I’m considering that one. I’ve felt the same way when listening to others on the team, like each time we try to clarify, we’re actually interrupting the flow of listening.
I couldn’t discern any patterns in the constructive criticism, but I think I was still able to profit from reflecting on the suggestions and critique.
Some people said we could give more practical, everyday application, but for every comment like that one, there were literally 10 that said we were hitting the mark. Even so, I’m always for drilling down better into everyday life, so I’ll try. And I’ll try to do it without taking away from biblical exposition.
One commenter said they found me confusing, but that the people in their family don’t agree so it must be about learning styles. Loved the self awareness on that.
A few asked for more exhortation and teaching on tough issues and lifestyle issues. One said that right when I start to get close to doing this, I end up skirting the issue or not going deep enough.
I think I’ve done a bit of that over the years, thinking there will be a better time to address those tough topics but rarely getting around to it. I think I’ve been diving into them more over the last few months, but we need much, much more.
And I’ve realized that while doing the Gospel Project has had many advantages, it has kept us out of some important passages and series we need to do. It tends to hit the highlights of the story of God, and sometimes we need to take a dive into something like the Sermon on the Mount or the lifestyle sections of Paul’s letters. So you can expect more of that when we finish up with the Gospel Project.
One more thing. So many of you included such kind, encouraging words to me and to our team that I felt super encouraged by you. Thank you so much!