I know it sounds odd…say less when you speak so you actually say more but it’s true. When we make our talks shorter and clearer people are able to take away more. Every communicator wants to say more. We all believe that if we just had 10 more minutes we could help a listener take that one extra thing home and it could change their life. That extra 10 minutes might just be what keeps the listener from taking your bottom line home! In our student ministry we embarked on a say less so we could say more experiment. We limited our middle school messages to 20 minutes and our high school messages to 25 minutes. During the first semester we have watched how God has used our shorter talks in big ways. We really believe we are making a bigger impact every week and here is why…
- Limited time forces us to say what is most important // with a time limit we use the best illustrations, best stories, best props, most important verses in Scripture because time is limited.
- Bottom Lines are stronger and more focused // we make sure now and work harder to say our bottom line in different ways and at different times in our talks because we want them going to small group remembering that one big idea
- We get to Scripture faster // with limited time we move to the Bible faster than we used to. The Scripture is the most important part of every talk anyway!
- Attention and retention is much better // teens know we are not going to talk forever so they are more willing to focus. Teens are also getting to group with a better grasp of the topic.
Our students really don’t need us to speak longer, they need what we say to be clear and to the point. Yes, you can stretch your students spiritually with shorter talks because they will actually be paying attention. I hope you will give it a try…say less so you make a bigger impact every week!
Great stuff! I’ve been trying to keep my messages a lot shorter with our middle school students over the past few months. I think that it has helped me to say only what needs to be said.
Yea man, it is hard work to be cut a talk down. Thanks for the comment.