The Weatherman Principle: Teaching Your Congregation Ministerial Meteorology
Some people skip the forecast and go straight to the radar to check on meteorological fronts, on lows, and on highs, as if they can get more out of the raw data than the expert’s interpretation of the data. They haven’t actually studied meteorology, but they’ve taken a keen interest in weather forecasting, and they’ve learned some basic meteorological principles.
Good meteorologists know how to tap into the interest of these armchair forecasters, and are keen to give them the next layer of information to help them grow in their meteorological forecasting.
Pastors and ministry leaders should follow this practice. While they should avoid overloading the congregation with too many exegetical technicals, their sermons and Bible studies should include enough facts and insider information to invite some of their listeners to go deeper in their independent study of scripture and theology.
The same is true for congregational singing. The song leader should point out theological moments in the hymn, or give a tip or two on how to bring out the best in the song. They might say, “Note how the words ‘Praise the Lord’ are twice repeated. Let’s ratchet up our voices, and sing the repeated words with greater enthusiasm.” Or, “On the chorus, let’s start softly and crescendo through each of the next phrases until we get to the last resounding cry of the line.”
The ministry leader should always allow the opportunity for the ambitious congregant to learn more.