todd clark

41 Recalibrating Quotes For Communicators

It seems like I am always in the process of reading, researching, writing, rehearsing or delivering a talk. And I love it!

So, over the next month I am going to write a series of articles that touch on the life of a communicator …

Before the Stage (Preparing yourself & the message.)
During the Stage (Presenting the message.)
After the Stage (Protecting yourself.)


In this post I want to share with you some of my favorite quotes about preaching, teaching and communicating.

These are principles I have lived by and all of them have served to recalibrate me and keep me on track over the years. Enjoy.


“As leaders, we are never responsible for filling anyone else’s cup. Our responsibility is to empty ours.”
~ Andy Stanley

[Tweet “”Preach like you know they almost didn’t come.”    ~Fred Craddock”]

“Be careful not to blame yourself if someone rejects Christ. If you do, you might be tempted to take credit when someone accepts him.”
~ Craig Groeschel

“Stories are verbal acts of hospitality.”
~ Eugene H. Peterson

“I preached as never sure to preach again, and as a dying man to dying men.”
~ Richard Baxter

“To preach more than half an hour, a man should be an angel himself or have angels for hearers.”
~ George Whitefield

“Preach the gospel to yourself every day.”
~ Jerry Bridges

“If I had only one sermon to preach it would be a sermon against pride.”
~  G. K. Chesterton

[Tweet “”When the idea you’re talking about becomes a person you care about, it changes how you preach.” @ReggieJoiner”]

“We don’t have to make the bible relevant—it is—but we have to show its relevance. What is irrelevant, in my opinion, is our style of communicating it. We are tending to still use the style from 50 years back that doesn’t match who we are trying to reach today.”
~ Rick Warren

“Past boldness is no assurance of future boldness. Boldness demands continual reliance on God’s spirit.”
~ Andy Stanley

“Becoming a great preacher, like becoming a great artist, requires a life commitment.”
~ Calvin Miller

“The preaching that this world needs most is the sermons in shoes that are walking with Jesus Christ.”
~ D.L. Moody


“To be effective the preacher’s message must be alive; it must alarm, arouse, challenge; it must be God’s present voice to a particular people.”
~ A.W. Tozer

“It is a poor sermon that gives no offense, that neither makes the hearer displeased with himself nor with the preacher.”
~ George Whitefield

“I’d rather be able to pray than to be a great preacher; Jesus Christ never taught his disciples how to preach, but only how to pray.”
D.L. Moody

“Go where your best prayers take you.”
~ Frederick Buechner

[Tweet “”If you have no joy, there’s a leak in your Christianity somewhere.” ~Billy Sunday”]

“We cannot be too careful about the words we use; we start out using them and they end up using us.”
~ Eugene H. Peterson

“Planning a yearly teaching & preaching calendar increases creativity, reduces anxiety and bolsters confidence.”
~ Todd Clark

“To speak the gospel skillfully without attempting to perform the gospel is a false proclamation of the gospel.”
~ William Willimon

“The Bible does not say we should aim at numbers but rather urges us faithfully to proclaim God’s message in the boldness of the Holy Spirit. This will build God’s church God’s way.”
Jim Cymbala

“Always carry with you into the pulpit a sense of the immense consequences which may depend on your full and faithful presentation of the truth.”
~ Richard Salter Storrs

“Every time I stand to communicate, I want to take one simple truth and lodge it in the heart of the listener. I want them to know that one thing and know what to do with it.”
~ Andy Stanley

“I would have every minister of the gospel address his audience with the zeal of a friend, with the generous energy of a father, and with the exuberant affection of a mother.”
~ François Fénelon

“Be who you are. But be the very best communicator you can possibly be. To do that you must be willing to sacrifice what’s comfortable—what has become part of your style—for the sake of what is effective.”
~ Andy Stanley

“Preaching is compelling to young secular adults not if preachers use video clips from their favorite movies and dress informally and sound sophisticated, but if the preachers understand their hearts and culture so well that listeners feel the force of the sermon’s reasoning, even if in the end they don’t agree with it.”
~ Tim Keller

“If Jesus preached the same message minister’s preach today, He would have never been crucified.”
Leonard Ravenhill

“John Bunyan, while he had a surpassing genius, would not condescend to cull his language from the garden of flowers; but he went into the hayfield and the meadow, and plucked up his language by the roots, and spoke out in the words that the people used in their cottages.”
~ Charles Spurgeon

[Tweet “”It often takes me just as long to prepare myself as a communicator as it does the message I’m communicating.” @toddclark”]

“There is no way I’m going to be able to say these words to these people. God says, “Here we go,” and you say them. You feel alone in the moment, and you have to die to audience response, realizing they are probably not going to carry your picture in their wallet anymore. But you know, This is precisely what God wants me to say. That’s a refining, character-building, intensely spiritual process. “
~ Bill Hybels

“Worship is a powerful witness to unbelievers—if God’s presence is felt, and if the message is understandable. God’s presence must be sensed in the service. More people are won to Christ by feeling God’s presence than by all our apologetic arguments combined. Few people, if any, are converted to Christ on purely intellectual grounds. It is the sense of God’s presence that melts the heart and explodes mental barriers.”
~ Rick Warren

“Settle in your mind, that no sermon is worth much in which the Lord is not the principal speaker. There may be poetry, refinement, historic truth, moral truth, pathos, and all the charms of rhetoric; but all will be lost, for the purposes of preaching, if the word of the Lord is not the staple of the discourse.”
~ John Hall

“The ground we have in common with unbelievers is not the Bible, but our common needs, hurts, and interests as human beings. You cannot start with a text expecting the unchurched to be fascinated by it. You must first capture their attention, and then move them to the truth of God’s Word. By starting with a topic that interests the unchurched and then showing what the Bible says about it, you can grab their attention, disarm prejudices, and create an interest in the Bible that wasn’t there before.”
~ Rick Warren

“The preaching of Christ is the whip that flogs the devil. The preaching of Christ is the thunderbolt, the sound of which makes all hell shake.”
~ Charles Spurgeon

“If you’re living a yielded life, and if you have the preaching and teaching gift, and you’re yielding that to God on a continual basis, that’s one of the signs that you’re in the right place doing the right thing for the right reasons. If you’re doing something in the kingdom, and you rarely feel that, that’s a red flag. Something needs to be looked at. Are you using the right gift? Are you using it in the right way? For the right reasons? At the right time? In the right context? If I didn’t feel it consistently, that would be quite troubling to me.”
~ Bill Hybels

“God has ordained that our preaching become deeper and more winsome as we are broken, humbled, and made low and desperately dependent on grace by the trials of our lives.”
~ John Piper

”The preacher is not a chef; he’s a waiter. God doesn’t want you to make the meal; He just wants you to deliver it to the table without messing it up. That’s all.”
~ John MacArthur

“Two choices: either he can speak, and that leads to all kinds of hostility and alienation, rejection by close friends, rejection on every side; or he can be silent, and then the stuff burns on the inside. Either speech or be silent. Either way unbearable, all because of the seductive God of Israel who has forced him into an impossible vocation. Better not to have been called; better not to notice or to care. But now all those options are gone; the poet has run out of options.”
~ Walter Brueggemann

“Shallow preaching & teaching is simple but simple preaching & teaching is very difficult.”
~ Todd Clark

“In a smaller church your pastoring sets up your preaching. In a larger church your preaching sets up your pastoring.”
~ Tim Keller

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

todd clark


Get regular thoughts, tips, & testimonies and start living the curious life you were meant to live.

Get weekly thoughts, tips, & testimonies & start living the adventuresome life you know you were meant to live.