Last Update 1st October, 2016.
How did your preaching go this week? As well as expected? Better than you anticipated?
As a pastor and preacher you have just 30 minutes to speak into the lives of your people and give them something that will take them through the next 7 days.
Each week you need to come up with something fresh, awe-inspiring, profound, life-changing and life-giving.
No pressure right?
The Preaching Rocket Core Coaching program can really help you with this.
If you’re a regular reader on GrowChurch.net you’ll know I don’t suggest many things, only what I’ve used myself and can wholeheartedly recommend.
This is exactly why Preaching Rocket is my #1 online preaching course recommendation for preachers looking to invest and develop as a preacher.
The quality of training and the input and help from the helpful and friendly Preaching Rocket community really helps me in preparing and presenting better sermons.
The training will also show you exactly how to get ahead plan your messages at least a year in advance.
An Easier Way
This last year, just between Christmas and New Year I spent a lot of time thinking and planning for the preaching year ahead.
For me, the easiest way to get ideas for preaching is to break up the year into bite-size chunks and come up with a topical preaching sermon series for each month. I don’t have to struggle from Sunday to Sunday scratching my head for new inspiration.
The New Year is the best time to plan the preaching for the year ahead and I highly recommend you do the same.
It forces you to think about what God wants to say to your people in the upcoming year and what journey He wants to take them on.
This method automatically forces you to be intentional about your preaching, rather just sticking to your favourite topics.
For each month I make sure I have these 4 things in place:
1) Monthly Sermon Series Title
2) Weekly Titles
3) Image – for projection, your church Facebook page, flyers etc.
Sermon Series Ideas
OK without further ado, these are the sermon series I have delivered in my local church this year.
Feel free to copy directly or take inspiration from these, you do not have to do the same as I did but maybe these ideas will prompt to come up with your own better ideas.
As always, if you have an questions or insight, simply add your comment below.
January Sermon Series Idea: Limitless Living
The Limitless Living series is a great way to start the year because it’s all about breaking off the limits of the past and looking ahead and being all you can be in a brighter new year.
Dare to believe God for greater things and make the necessary changes.
I’ve done this series twice now, both in the UK and Thailand and it’s gone really well.
Each week I talk about a different aspect of limitless living, for example:
Week 1: Limitless Faith
Week 2: Limitless Wisdom
Week 3: Limitless Grace
Week 4: Limitless Love
2 Corinthians 6:11-13 – “Dear, dear Corinthians, I can’t tell you how much I long for you to enter this wide-open, spacious life. We didn’t fence you in. The smallness you feel comes from within you. Your lives aren’t small, but you’re living them in a small way. I’m speaking as plainly as I can and with great affection. Open up your lives. Live openly and expansively! (The Message)
February Sermon Series Idea: Relationship Status
Since February is the month of Valentine’s Day I always think a good topical theme for this month should be something to do with relationships, marriage or the family.
There’s so many fun angles you can go for with this monthly sermon series idea… from how to have a stronger marriage, how to have a happier home life to how to raise children the right way or how to have better relationships in your life.
When I did this sermon series this past year I used the title “Relationship Status” and used the Facebook image above as each week as the team spoke about different types of relationships each week.
Week 1: Relationship with Spouse
Week 2: Relationship with Children
Week 3: Relationships between Father and Son
Week 4: Relationship With God
Of course, if your Sunday morning service is for new people then every week make it evangelistic and point to our relationship with God.
March Sermon Series Idea: Character Under Construction
Where do we go to develop character on our life? In a world obsessed with outward appearance, we need to remember that God is in the process of developing character in our lives and He wants us to be a part of that process. When we choose to renew our minds, it will result in transformed lives.
“Character is more important that personal achievement or fulfillment.”
This is the main message we wanted to get through this month through the topical sermon series “Character under Construction”.
Thinking about our church members, we expect to see change in their lives. If there’s no change then why bother right? We want to take them through from baby new believers to mature believers.
Some ideas and tips for weekly preaching:
Week 1: Controlling our thoughts (Phil 4:8 Rom 12:1-2)
Week 2: Guarding our Hearts (Pro 4:23)
Week 3: Keeping good company (Pro 1)
Week 4: Fruits of the Spirit (Gal 5:22-23, 1 Pet 1:5-6)
April Preaching Sermon Series Idea: Who Is Jesus?
Prophet? Teacher? God? Why is my answer to this question so important? Why did he have to die and how does the cross change my life? Is He really God? How good is good enough?
April, usually the month of Easter, is an ideal month to talk about sin, redemption, salvation, the cross and the resurrection. You will have visitors, especially on Easter Sunday so let your April preaching be targeted at unchurched people.
You could even organise an Invite a Friend Sunday.
Mark 8:29 – “And Jesus asked, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered and said to Him, “You are the Christ.”
May Sermon Series Idea: Back to the Bible
In our church here in Thailand, the Sunday morning service is aimed at reaching new, unchurched people.
With the ‘Back to Bible message series we answer questions like: Can we trust the Bible? What does the Bible say about itself? Can you build your life on it?
Week 1: The Bible is Historically Accurate
Week 2: The Bible is Prophetically Accurate
Week 3: The Bible is Scientifically Accurate
Week 4: You Can Build Your Life On It
Matt 7:24 – “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock.”
June Sermon Series Idea: Rooted
Rooted can be a great opportunity to teach your people how to be self-feeding on the Scriptures in their own time. This is an important step in the discipleship process.
This sermon series covers the topic of discipleship and spiritual disciplines.
You could talk about things like how to pray, how to read the Bible, how to follow a Bible reading plan, a simple way to do daily devotions, importance of connect groups, the benefits of being faithful in supporting your church, baptism.
Jeremiah 17:8 – “For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters,
Which spreads out its roots by the river,
And will not fear when heat comes;
But its leaf will be green,
And will not be anxious in the year of drought,
Nor will cease from yielding fruit.“
The main theme of this month’s preaching messages is “You do not go to church, you are the church.”
You want to use this series to encourage your members to each play their part in the local church, to stir up their giftings, to support and be faithful to the vision of the church.
The topics you could include are: connect groups, tithing, serving, inviting friends and family to church, created for community, being vision-driven loving one another as Christ loves us and living in unity as a family.
You could really fun with this one; if you have a media guy you could film some video testimonies of how the work of your church has impacted someone’s life. This is not only great for morale but you are casting the vision and reminding people of the mission of the church.
Decoration ideas: Why not take pictures of everyone, or use their Facebook profile pics (with permission) and put them around the room – the youth, children, adults – everyone who is part of your church family.
1 Corinthians 12:27 – “You are Christ’s body—that’s who you are! You must never forget this. Only as you accept your part of that body does your “part” mean anything.” (The Message)
August Sermon Series Idea: Storm-Proof your Life
Storm-Proof discusses and answers some of life’s toughest questions: how to handle hard times, disappointments, hurts, pain, betrayal, temptation.
Topics could include trusting God in all circumstances, how to trust God when you don’t understand.
Living your life on a Biblical foundation and making sure you will not be moved, not be shaken. How to trust in God as your refuge and source of strength. How to let go of the past hurts, moving on and looking to a brighter future.
If done right, this could a powerful message to your church in equipping them to Storm-proof their life.
Theme verse: John 16:33 – “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.“
September Sermon Series Idea: Unlikely Heroes
Do the people in your church need to start thinking bigger? Bolder? Do they need to learn to step out in faith and be all that God has called them to be?
An Unlikely Heroes sermon series could be a fun and inspiring way to show your people how to be strong in the knowledge that the Lord God is with them.
Each week could look at some of the great (and unlikeliest) heroes of the Bible.
Looking at the life of someone like Daniel, Moses, David, Gideon, Abraham, Paul gives you a great opportunity to pull out principles from these examples of ordinary people who did extraordinary things for God.
Of course let us not forget Jesus of course, who is the greatest hero of them all! I tweeted this just the other day…
“What makes Christianity different, is that it is a story where the hero dies to save the villain.” [Tweet this]
Theme verse: Daniel 11:32 – “…and the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits.”
October Sermon Series Idea: Amazing Grace
Amazing grace… it’s more than we deserve and greater than we imagine. Discussing issues like sin, righteousness, letting go of the past, living under the waterfall of his grace and looking to the bright future.
The finished work of Christ’s cross and it’s implications in our daily lives. Realising who we are and what we have in Christ.
John 1:16 – “And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.”
November Sermon Series Idea: Get in the Game
Get in the Game is a series with the sole purpose of spurring your people to action! Your church will start moving forward only when people start taking ownership of their own part to play.
Christianity is a contact sport. The true joy and satisfaction in the journey of faith comes when we get off of the substitute bench and onto the field. God wants all believers to get in the game and play to win!
You can equip them with practical ways to evangelise to their friends, neighbours and family; How to share the gospel in 2 mins easily, How to share your personal story with a non-believer, how to make a prayer list of the people they will invite to church and so on.
You could even organise an Invite a Friend to Church Sunday if you wanted, especially in the run up to Christmas.
Matthew 4:18 – “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
December Sermon Series Idea: And He Shall Be Called…
In the lead up to Christmas, get the most out of December with this sermon series.
Naturally evangelistic in nature, each week looks at the attributes of God, and how it applies to you, how it directly effects your daily life. Every week points to Jesus.
Week 1: He Shall Be Called… Wonderful Counselor
Week 2: He Shall Be Called… Mighty God
Week 3: He Shall Be Called… Everlasting Father
Week 4: He Shall Be Called… Prince of Peace
Isaiah 9:6 – “For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
I hope these ideas help bring some fresh ideas and inspiration to your sermon prep. If you haven’t checked it out yet, here’s my full review on Preaching Rocket: Can It Really Help You Preach Better Sermons?
What message series has worked well for you? Leave your awesome comments below!