“The Big Idea” by Dave Ferguson et al

The Big Idea.jpgI am an information junkie. I read newspapers, magazines, books, and blogs. I watch TV and listen to talk radio. I consider myself a well-informed guy. But being well-informed is not the same thing as being wise or effective. Indeed, too much information can paralyze our ability to make decisions.
Our churches often contribute to this glut of information. The pastor preaches on one topic, Sunday school teachers teach on another, the worship leader sings new songs with multiple verses, and the announcement guy rambles on with the church’s upcoming events. No wonder parishioners get stuck in their spiritual lives. They have too much information to act on. They know more than they can do.
In their new book, The Big Idea, Dave Ferguson, Jon Ferguson, and Eric Bramlett tackle the topic of information-glutted, decision-paralyzed churches. They argue that churches should teach one big idea per week, and that this big idea should be reinforced in all the church’s venues (worship services, Sunday school classes, and small groups). They demonstrate the multiple benefits of the big-idea approach. And they offer practical guidelines for how to implement this model of ministry in your church based on their own experience.
Do you want to make more and better followers of Jesus Christ? Do you want to see a greater connection between people’s faith and works? Then, as The Big Idea’s subtitle puts it, “focus the message” so that you can “multiply the impact.” Teach your parishioners one thing a week. They can do more with less.

6 thoughts on ““The Big Idea” by Dave Ferguson et al

  1. Ken:

    It’s a fantastic book with lots of application to pulpit ministry, as well as the general ministry of the church. By teaching one “big idea” per week across the spectrum of a church’s ministries (children, youth, adult small groups, etc.), the authors argue that a church can increase “missional velocity,” the rate at which people put the Bible into practice and grow in Christlikeness.


  2. hmmm. I think I would have to disagree a little with this.

    Its not about having too much information to act upon if we are listening to what God want’s to teach us rather than us deciding what to teach.

    God speaks to people on all levels, toddlers, teenagers, adults alike, and it’s not about what we decide to teach to all ages, it’s more about what God wants to say to us. And if we are listening to what God is wanting to say, then generally you would find that they will relate in one way or another, but either way, at least we know we are hearing what God wants us to hear rather than being concerned to teach only one thing a week to all ages.

  3. Ferguson et al teach that you should pray before you plan. Or, to put it another way, they argue implicitly that we should plan to hear God’s voice through prayer. Teaching one idea per week is a methodological issue. Ferguson et al write that you should be prepared to change your Sunday topic in case something major happens that needs to be addressed.

  4. God actually tells us to seek him first.

    I can relate the topic to when I was a worship leader, I would say to God for him to tell me which songs to play because I knew then that if I got the songs from God, he would annoint the worship. There was no point me picking the songs myself because I could easily get it wrong. I would remain open during the worship if there were other songs that God would lead me to play, and sure enough, the worship was annointed and God was able to do what he wanted to do during the worship.

    I guess my point is, whoever is responsible for teaching either the children, teens and adults should be listening to God as to what he would have them say rather than being told a topic to teach on, otherwise it could easily appear to be regimental rather than allowing ourselves to be open to God for him to guide us. This would not be a “major” thing, this would be normal 😉

  5. Hi there, I came across your blog posting after searching for teach and your post on by Dave Ferguson et al makes an interesting read. Thanks for sharing. I will search online more next Monday when I have the day off.

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