6 Apps for Sermon Preparation
Using good technological tools and resources for effective preaching.
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If you are the primary preaching pastor, the labor of weekly preaching ministry can sometimes be a grind. Preaching the Word of God is a heavy weight and responsibility, that no one should take lightly. Sermon preparation takes a tremendous amount of time, mental dexterity, prayerful dependence, and hard work. Preaching is the pastor's top weekly priority, and the pastor should always grow in their effectiveness in their labor. Part of effective preaching is utilizing good tools and resources. As the primary preaching pastor myself, here are some tools I've found that have helped me greatly in my preaching ministry.
1. Day One
Sermon preparation is birthed out of your own spiritual walk with the Lord. One of the best ways to chronicle your own spiritual journey is to keep a journal. Day One is the best application on the market for journaling. In your daily times with the Lord chronicle what the Spirit teaches you from the Scriptures. As you pray and meditate through writing, you will stoke the embers of spiritual life as the Spirit grants you understanding. Often the best nuggets of truth from sermons are birthed in these simple moments of the Lord. Capture them in writing. Day One helps you do that and creates a secure and searchable journal for your sermon preparation.
We live in a blessed age. There are more Bible study tools on the market now than ever before. These tools can help you dive in the text, parse a Greek verb, or do a Hebrew word study with just a tap. Out of all the options on the market today, none is as powerful as Logos. Logos does require a significant financial investment up front, but it is well worth the cost. Logos will help you do research in minutes that used to take hours. It can search through a library of books in seconds. In addition, you can take Logos with you anywhere, making sermon preparation out of your study even easier.
3. Library Thing
What is a pastor without his books? Pastors tend to be closet bibliophiles. Every pastor should grow a theological library, and as your library grows and expands, you need a system of organizing and tracking your books so you can find that book you're looking for. Library Thing is a web-based tool that helps you organize your library and search it. Library Thing will help you in your sermon prep and find that one commentary in your library you need to consult. Keep track of your resources with Library Thing.
When I finish my exegesis of the text and scan through the commentaries, I prayerfully begin constructing a skeleton outline. If you utilize outlines in your preaching or writing, Omnioutliner is the tool for you. It easily helps you dump the ideas out of your brain, and allows you to easily move that material around. Out of the chaos of your brain dump, you can use Omnioutliner to create cohesion, focus, and movement within your sermon. Outlining through Omnioutliner will help you fabricate the big vision for your sermon including main points, sub-points, applications, and illustrations.