Today's Word for Pastors...

How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you. 
Psalms 139:17-18

Today's Preaching Insight...

Innovations Churches Should Embrace

The Summer 2007 issue of Willow magazine (published by the Willow Creek Association) included a feature on "15 Innovations the Church Should Embrace NOW!" Among the items listed:

"Podcasting - circuit riding at the speed of light. In addition to your weekly messages, how about spicing it up with special editions? Try doing interviews with church neighbors, the mayor, volunteers, staff intros., etc. If it's worth preaching it's worth podcasting. Any church of any size can exponentially increase its impact via MP3 technology.

Blogging - digital discipleship. Don't blog for an audience, blog for you. The more you write about what's on your head and heart, the more people will respond. Blogging increases your bandwidth and allows you to digitally disciple just about anybody, anywhere, anytime.

Viral Video - get contagious quickly. Use YouTube to spread the love. There's even a first-time visitor orientation. Use it creatively for things like behind-the-scenes sermon prep, church staff meetings, or videos created by the congregation. There's a reason why this is one of the top visual communication sites on the Web.

Web Site - your church portal. Guests can watch a Webcast, read your history, and get as much information on your church as they want. And they can do it from the comfortable confines of their computer. Most people will visit your Web site long before they visit a service. Your Web site is your first impression. FREE BONUS TIP: Ruthlessly eliminate lame Web sites (you know who you are!)

E-Mail - word of mouse. Churches should avoid spam at all costs, but an e-letter is an easy and affordable way to keep the church connected. An e-mail is a simple way to keep a ministry team on the same page or evite a friend to church. Think of it as word of mouse. Many pastors preach to more people via e-mail than they do via voice. It's a form of e-vangelism."

(To read the full article, including the other 10 innovations, click here.)

Today's Extra...

Illustration: Clarity 

Proper attire is required in the cafeteria at the University of Maine. To enforce that rule, the management posted this notice:

"Shoes are required to eat in this cafeteria."

Next to it, a student added, "Socks can eat wherever they want."

Preaching magazine is the premier resource for those who proclaim the Word. To begin your own subscription, go to http://magazine.preaching.com/subscribe/.