Everyone has one: strong, medium or weak. This does not matter, but we must preach within our own. To try to preach beyond our persona does not come out right. One small part of persona or “stage presence” or “projection” is experience. It shows – just as inexperience does.

Usually, young inexperienced preachers will preach LOUD. That’s not bad unless the loudness exceeds their persona. If it does, the preacher loses credibility with the hearers, but the hearers will not figure it out. But they will respond accordingly, plus or minus.

Notice that the older, experienced speakers do not have to depend on volume because of his presence, assurance and persona. T. D. Jakes and John Hagee can speak loud or soft. It doesn’t matter. They have obtained their own high status. How would Joel Osteen come off with screaming? Different persona.

Some folks perceive that loudness is anointing – wrong.

Bill Gothard says, “Let the truth do the shouting.” Also, don’t shout if the commentary does not warrant it lest you cast doubt upon self. Not only sound volume but exclamatory tones should be regulated. Example would be theatrics, or over expressiveness when the subject would not warrant it – less you would be deemed out of touch.

Whispering also has it place along with passionate speech and emotional choke ups, break downs. They cannot be planned or orchestrated.

Body language must be honest and impressive as it speaks out.

Honesty, sincerity, along with timely humor will also add to the message. Concerning humor, study timing because without timing, humor will bomb.

Don’t introduce humor; just present it as a surprise. Don’t begin with “Let me tell you a joke”, or “have you heard this one?” Let it be a part of the message.

Finally – think, communicate. You want them to take it home.

Make them mad, sad, or glad but don’t get adversarial. We are preaching for change, and only God’s Word will bring conversion when attended by the Holy Spirit.

“Sir, we would see Jesus.” So stay hidden behind the cross – not me, but Christ.”

Francis P. Martin

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