DEVELOPING A MESSAGE TO PREACH IN HIGH SCHOOLS
WHAT IS A MESSAGE?
A message is a brief sermon that will be shared during a Jesus Club Gathering.
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A MESSAGE?
The purpose of a message is to present the gospel and biblical truth to the students in a way that is meaningful, understandable, and applicable/relevant in their life context.
WHEN DOES A MESSAGE TAKE PLACE?
The message will take place after a Student Leader opens the Jesus Club Gathering by welcoming classmates, giving announcements, and introducing the speaker for that Club Gathering. From start to finish, speakers are allotted 12-15 minutes to share their message and give students the opportunity to respond.
- You will have a short time to share and give students an opportunity to respond so you want to make sure your words are concise and your application is easy to understand and respond to.
- Be yourself! Share from your life experience. Even if you come from a different background, students will connect with transparency and authenticity.
- Greet the crowd with statements that include everyone.
- For example, don’t say “Who loves Jesus?” because they might not all love Jesus yet and some of the crowd will feel unaddressed!
- However, you can start by asking “Where are my freshman at?, Where are my juniors? How about the sophomores? And last but not least, let’s hear it from the seniors!”. Now the whole crowd has responded to you and everyone is engaged.
- Make your title easy to remember.
- We recommend starting your message with a personal story, shared life experience, or cultural reference to connect with your audience. Real life stories and shared life experiences are captivating. Share your story in a way that is engaging.
- Props are powerful. If there is a prop or visual that will tie your story to your truth (see below), incorporate this into your message!
- Develop a transition statement to move your message from the story to the truth you will be unpacking.
- Transition from your story to telling about the context of the scripture you will share. Paint the picture for students, using their common language, to give them a context they can understand.
- Share the scripture – this is the “truth”.
- We recommend that you do not share large chunks of scripture. Sharing shorter segments of scripture will help students more fully comprehend and process what you are teaching them.
- If using visual technology, have the scripture displayed on the screen.
- It is important to conclude every message you share at Jesus Club with a response and/or practical ways for students to live out your message.
- End your message with how students can apply the truth to their life that day and throughout the week.
- Give students the opportunity to respond to the truth you shared.
- Give students the opportunity to surrender their lives and enter into a relationship with Jesus.