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Learning from Giants

An interview with Kevin A. Miller

See theme Whenever I hear great preaching, part of me wants to imitate what I hear, because it's good and it affects me deeply. But then people say the only way you're going to be the preacher you were meant to be is to be yourself. So there's this tension. How do we learn from outstanding preachers and still be ourselves?

Kevin Miller: That question is one I've wrestled with over the years, and I've come up with some principles that have been helpful to me.

The first principle is counterintuitive, and that is, don't apply what you first notice in a great preacher. That is because what you first notice in a great preacher is his strongest gift.

For example, when I listen to John Ortberg, I am awed by his sense of comic timing. The guy has an ability to deliver the punch line at just the right moment. Or I listen to Haddon Robinson. Haddon has these incredible hands. He uses his hands better than anybody I've seen in preaching. They're perfectly timed and apt. Or Tim Keller. He's ...

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