In December HSM is gong to do a series call Instalife about jealousy, pretending and bragging – talking through what the Bible says on these very important subjects. I happened to stumble on an article (poorly titled, but oh well) on the very subject on Gizmodo that is absolutely perfect research for my message. You can certainly read the whole article, but my favorite part of it being the list of questions the author put at the end:
- Am I sharing this picture only because I want people to wish they were where I am?
- Am I someplace expensive? Is it obvious?
- Am I someplace nobody else was invited? Do they wish they were invited?
- Am I posting this only because I want people to like it? Or like me?
- Am I posting this only because it makes me look good?
- Am I posting myself and explicitly stating how good I look?
- Am I a nice person?
- Have I called my parents lately?
- Did my parents get divorced because of me?
- Did my parents stay together because of me?
- Do I know for sure that my ex follows me on Instagram and I want to make sure she sees this so she’ll regret itâ€”oh, how she’ll regret it all!
- If I saw what I’m about to share, would I roll my eyes?
- Can I imagine anyone commenting, on this picture, “Ahhh I’m so jealous! I hate u!”
- Is this an Instaboast?
Now … this is a completely secular article but points out some great truths for me to now use in my message. If I didn’t know roughly what I was teaching on I wouldn’t know to collect stuff like this right now. If I’m preparing a “Saturday night special” talk for my audience on Sunday morning, they’ll never be as good as when I prepare in advance.
Let me spell it out rapid fire if it isn’t obvious:
- Plan in broad strokes your teaching calendar for the season ahead
- Be a collector of what you read/stumble on
- Listen well to what you hear around you and in the culture
- Look for stories on your theme in your community
- Pray throughout the process
- Deliver a great talk
Good luck as you prepare your talk this week … and the one 2 months from now!