The Challenge of Connecting One Message With Multiple Maturity Levels

One of the biggest challenges in preaching and teaching is to deliver one message that reaches into the lives of people of all maturity levels – from seekers and what will speak to their heart to mature Christians and what will speak to theirs. I know I have connected when people of different generations have good things to say about a ministry, sermon or class (unless you just have a few people being kind and gracious despite the content…which can certainly happen!).

How do you bring substance to a message that has something to connect with people of all levels of spiritual maturity? Well, that is a question I am still trying to answer and many of you can and should share your valuable insights on how you would answer that question. Here are a few things that I think can help that happen:

1 – Knowledge of scripture – you can’t share what you don’t know. There are times when the congregation’s knowledge of scripture needs to be stretched and for the minister to model what it looks like to dig into the Bible and pull out real application.
2 – Leadership – the message should actually be trying to take people from where they are to a new/transformational place (closer to God and others). Messages that don’t connect often are those that don’t communicate that this message has anything to speak into your life’s journey. You can’t take people where you haven’t gone yourself.
3 – Character – You can know scripture and know how to lead but if your heart is in the wrong place, the whole thing can get undermined.
4 – Submission – Ministers are put in places of authority and when that happens it is easy to make things how you want them…who wouldn’t, right? Well, ministry that is done from the attitude of a servant and is done with submission means you won’t and shouldn’t always get your way but will submit to the will and preferences of others for the sake of the unity of the body.
5 – Accountability – If there isn’t anyone who can speak a word of correction into your ministry then you are on dangerous ground. We should get secure enough with ourselves to invite critique into our ministries and messages. No one is above that.

What would you add to this list?

3 Responses to The Challenge of Connecting One Message With Multiple Maturity Levels

  1. David Himes says:

    Both elders and ministers run the risk of thinking their authority comes from being placed in their positions. The reality SHOULD be that their authority comes from be authentically in their service to others.

    This is a source of much of the internal turmoil from which congregations suffer.

  2. John says:

    One thing I might add; and this could be a note under 1 or 2. Be a reader of material of multiple maturity levels.

  3. I find that your postings will greatly assist the church present on Facebook which are of differing maturity levels. My experience of being able to reach out to young and old is to be in intimacy with God throughout the day to hear His voice and post solid scripture that encompasses the whole of what God is saying. For example 1 Corithians 3 talks about the foundation of Jesus Christ and the pitfalls when we don’t adhere to the guidelines. People receive the wholeness of His word. This encourages them to read further. Ignites interest and eventually passion to share with others. Through this intimacy God illuminates His understanding of His word through you as you share the scriptures. Just like you demonstrated in Psalm 139 Matt. How do you know if what God is saying is cutting deep to bone and marrow ? The positive response and the continued learning and encouragement from others that you receive and the knowledge that many others are growing in maturity in their wisdom knowledge and understanding of the Bible. God Bless.

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