In a recent article at his blog for smaller church leaders, Karl Vaters asserts: “Rhymes and alliterations used to make speakers seem credible, authoritative and prepared. That's no longer the case.

Recently, I was doing a session with pastors on how to preach better sermons for today's congregations. When I advised them to stop making their sermon notes rhyme, something in the room shifted.

The older pastors recoiled in horror at the idea, but the younger pastors became like bobble-heads nodding up and down. So I paused to point out the difference.

“Am I right on this one?” I asked the young leaders. Their nodding increased. So I went on, supported by my bobble-head choir of young leaders, to explain why it no longer make my sermon notes rhyme or alliterate.

We No Longer Need It as a Memory Device. If people want to remember what we said, they’ll check the handouts, listen to the podcast, email us, record the message on their phone, or…You get the idea.

People don’t so much as have their best friend’s phone number memorized any more. They’re not trying to remember the points of our sermon.

People Don't Care About What the Pastor Cares About. I hate to break it to you, but the time pastors spend trying to make every point start with the same letter is wasted. We’re the only ones who care.

People Prefer One Practical Idea over 5 Points that Rhyme. No one leaves church with our acronym ringing in his or her ears. If we give them one helpful principle, they’ll latch on to it; and if it’s applicable, they may even do it.

Rhyming Feels Phony. This may be the biggest reason of all to give up rhymes and alliterations. It was the one that really got the young bobble-heads going. Real life doesn’t rhyme.

The younger generation has given up on finding easy answers. Some have given up on finding any answers at all. However, for those who are open to what the Bible has to say, they know real answers don't all start with the same letter or spell out F.A.I.T.H. Pastors think it’s clever. Listeners think it’s fake.” (Read the full article.)

Share This On: