The Tech-Nerd Preacher, Part 1

TechnerdPerhaps I've sold out. I'd like to think I've adapted to the times.

Tangible, paper books still adorn my shelves. However, most of the books I've bought over the last year are all inside one cover and are less than a half-inch thick. I still call and write to people (letter or email), but now I'm as likely to tweet or Facebook them. I still preach from a leather-bound Bible, but my notes, as of about six months ago, are on my Kindle DX.

Here's why I made the shift to the Kindle DX:

  • Less paper. I manuscript my sermons, though I preach them like an outline. I thus would carry 12-14 pages of paper into the pulpit each week. It was a mess, and easy to get a page or two out of place over three services. And…OK…it saves a few trees.
  • Cheap books. I LOVE books. I was able to cut my book budget and read more often, simply because the Kindle is always with me…and when it is, my whole library is with me.
  • It's light. It weighs less than a pound. 'Nuff said.
  • Search. I can search through my entire collection of Kindle books like a concordance…making it easy to find quotes and illustrations from within my book collection.
  • Text-to-speech. Here's a biggie. I can manuscript the sermon and then have it sent to my Kindle. I can then have it read out loud to me before Sunday. True, the voice is somewhat robotic. But, it's not awful. This allows me get a feel for how the sermon will sound. I can, in essence, hear the sermon before it's ever delivered…and make changes if something comes across quite differently when heard than when read. This is also why I like the Kindle better than Nook or the Sony Reader. Having said that, those readers are great for reading and holding sermon notes.

I don't read biblical text from it, though. I feel like it's best for the church to see me read from a leather-bound Bible…which is what most them have. More importantly, it sends a message of submission to the Word that reading off an IPhone or off a Kindle doesn't. I know some will disagree that it's different at all. I just happen to think it is.

Those of you who have ways of using technology to your benefit in ministry, let the rest of us in on it. Technology need not be the foe of ministry. In fact, it can be our invaluable assistant.

Got any tech tricks or ways you leverage technology to bless ministry?

Dr. Tim Spivey is Lead Planter of New Vintage Church in San Diego, California. He is the author of numerous articles and one book, "Jesus: The Powerful Servant." A sought after speaker for events, Tim also serves as Adjunct Professor of Religion at Pepperdine University. Tim serves as a church consultant, and his writings are featured on, Church Executive magazine, Faith Village, Sermon Central, and Giving Rocket.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

Share Your Thoughts

7 thoughts on “The Tech-Nerd Preacher, Part 1

  1. Using the Kindle for preaching:
    I borrowed my daughter-in-law’s Kindle for two Sundays. I usually preach from paper. It was very easy to convert my sermon notes and extremely easy to preach from. I loved it!
    Reading Logos:
    I would love to be able to read one of my electronic books from our living room in the evening.
    Updated news for ereaders:
    My son just sent me a link to the Skiff Reader. It seems that this is a bust-out year for ereaders at CES 2010.
    We should keep watching and pressing Logos to allow bi-directional integration with ereaders.

  2. Use my Kindle 2 by keeping a second Bible translation open during Bible study in church (KJV on Kindle, and hard copy ESV), some versions of KJV allow you to jump to a verse via typing a search shortcut (eg; 2ti.3.16 for 2 Timothy 3:16). I’ve only had my K2 for about a week now and have 3 Bibles (ESV Study BIble, KJV, and NKJV), 1 Commentary, 2 Bible dictionaries, a couple of other boks that are studies of other books of the Bible, and loads of other spiritual uplifting literature.
    In short, it has become my “study the word of God, anywhere” tool……

  3. If it goes on the fritz, then an elder has to finish the sermon 🙂
    While the chances of it happening are remote, the preacher should have it in his head well enough to go raw in an emergency.

  4. Tracey ordered me a Nook for Christmas and it should be here in a few weeks. I’d lend you some books, but the Kindle doesn’t do that. I went with the Nook for a few reasons, but I don’t think I’d ever use the text to speech feature anyway.
    And yes, you are a tech-nerd. Knowing is half the battle.