Happy New Year, friends! I hope everyone had a restful and renewing Christmas and that you’re chomping at the bit for a new year.
My pastor preached the best sermon from Acts 4 on Sunday with a question that I believe will form my year. “Do you want to please God, or do you just want God to please you?”
Wow! That cuts right to the heart of the matter, doesn’t it?
As I pursue the calling of speaking this year, I want to make sure that each step is a step that will please God. Here are 10 ways to consider sharpening your speaking as you seek God about your next steps:
1. Spend a day (or as much time as you can carve out) in a quiet place with just your Bible and a journal. Worship, pray and read God’s Word. Ask Him to speak to you about His agenda for you for the year. (See my blog at www.amycarroll.org on Jan. 5 for more details about a retreat with Jesus.)
2. Pray before you speak, “Lord, help me to love you first and love these women as you love them.” Watch your focus change and your nerves subside.
3. Prayerfully lay aside a percentage of each of your speaking fees for reinvestment back into your ministry.
4. Purchase a book that will challenge you in your speaking and implement at least one new idea in your next message. We’ve got some great suggestions in our reading list on the sidebar!
5. Schedule time each week to work on your speaking ministry–studying, writing new messages or working on marketing tasks.
6. Prayerfully choose 12 of Tracie’s marketing ideas, and implement one each month this year.
7. Attend She Speaks. (As an aside, I know I’m prejudiced, but I can’t imagine a more inspiring or equipping conference for Christian speakers. If finances are a concern, I’ll publish a post soon about ideas for covering registration.)
8. Be open to all kinds of venues for speaking, and speak as often as possible. Pray for chances to share God’s message and exercise your “speaking muscle”.
9. Record yourself (digital recorders are worth the investment) or ask to be recorded each time you speak. Then listen to yourself! I know it’s excruciating, but you’ll identify more needs for improvement by doing this than by any other single thing.
10. And last but not least…use Next Step Speaker Services to help you individually with message development, message evaluation or developing marketing pieces. Next week, I’ll give you a little picture of what you’ll receive through our services.