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Communicating for a Change: Seven Keys to Irresistible Communication

4.26  ·  Rating details ·  3,234 ratings  ·  299 reviews
When You Talk, Are People Changed?

Whether you speak from the pulpit, podium, or the front of a classroom, you don’t need much more than blank stares and faraway looks to tell you you’re not connecting. Take heart before your audience takes leave! You can convey your message in the powerful, life-changing way it deserves to be told. An insightful, entertaining parable that
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published June 1st 2006 by Multnomah
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Average rating 4.26  · 
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 ·  3,234 ratings  ·  299 reviews

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I’m deeply conflicted about this book, so giving it a definitive star rating is pretty challenging, honestly.

On the one hand, there are some really terrific observations and practical, common-grace wisdom in these pages. There are even glimpses into Stanley’s very sincere love for his audience and his church, and his desire to help pastors preach and deliver more effectively-communicated messages is certainly heartfelt, welcome, and sincere.

The problem—and it’s a big one—is that it’s all inextri
Rachel Blom
Jan 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
There is a lot of good, even great advice on how to deliver a sermon in Communicating for a Change. To get to the good stuff however, you need to read through the first part of the book first and that was a bit of a struggle for me, because I didn’t care much for it. Don’t let that deter you from reading the book though, for you’ll miss out on good insights into preaching that really connects with your audience.

Communicating for a change is written by Andy Stanley, founder and senior pastor of N
Ben Bandiera
Jan 13, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ministry
I belt the writer has some unresolved chips on his shoulder towards certain styles of preaching, especially anything that is 'bible heavy,' that being said, the second half of this book raises some solid points about communication and things that anybody getting up to preach the gospel should think about. This is of-course after you wade through 100 odd pages of some drawn out retelling which honestly disproves his whole argument about storytelling being an effective way to communicate informati ...more
Jan 10, 2011 rated it really liked it
Stanley & Jones' Communicating For A Change is my new go-to book for practicing homiletics. The five-point sermon made sense in an age when people were used to hearing and following one to two hour discourses. That's not the current culture and preaching needs to adapt. While the method Stanley & Jones present is clear and simple, the practice will be difficult, less so for those practiced in story-based preaching, but certainly for those schooled to the classic academic Protestant style. Why? B ...more
Alexander Wood
Feb 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Changed the way I think about preaching and teaching. Andy Stanley has many fantastic ideas about communication.
Kevin Wojciechowski
Jan 02, 2021 rated it really liked it
Helpful resource for preaching. I hear Fr. Mike Schmitz reviews this book regularly to continuously improve his preaching.
Andy Stanley is a well-known Protestant pastor. While his content in this book is not always relevant for Catholic homilies (ie. he assumes your sermons are 30-50 minutes long, he assumes your whole audience is following along with their Bibles like a Bible study, etc.) there’s plenty of helpful tips that Catholic speakers/homilists can glean to improve our communication ski
Robert Sutherland
Aug 02, 2020 rated it liked it
I reread this book recently after a ten or more year gap from the first reading. This book has its strengths and weaknesses. It's really two books in one telling the same information. The first part is an uncompelling "Who Moved My Cheese" parable where a trucker teaches a preacher how to to effectively communicate with his audience. That was weak and unnecessary. The second half of the book is the seminar where Stanley lays out his plan in seven stages. It is clear and actionable. For weekly ch ...more
Jun 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: preaching
Good practical advice on verbal communication; a quick read but some potent insights. I would disagree with Andy about a lot regarding theology, church, and worship, but I am glad to have his insights on communication. I will be trying to put some of this into practice.
Jason Kolar
Feb 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great book. Didn't agree with everything Andy Stanley said but took away a lot that will probably carry with me the rest of my life, and that is the essence of a 5 star book. Would definitely recommend. ...more
Brandon Early
Apr 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Communicator's gold! Mine! If you are a communicater/Bible teacher/preacher this book is gold! Outline this book and create templates to filter your messages through. Take notes on how to filter your message after you have taught, so you learn how that message could have been stronger and to learn from and leverage that info to make your next message better! ...more
Jordan Uzoni
Dec 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
I know it is wrote specifically for preachers, but I have used this method to give speeches in different settings and it really works.
May 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Though my goodreads account has suffered serious neglect of late, I have indeed been reading, and now that I have a bit of breathing space, I think I will add books a few at a time to avert a deluge.

To be honest, I considered not adding this particular title fearing what some of my friends might think a) about why I am reading a book on preaching and b) why I am reading Andy Stanley at all. But I found this book so genuinely helpful that I feel I must heartily recommend it to anyone who would l
Shirley Brosius
Jul 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
If you do any public speaking, you owe it to yourself to read this book. Authors Andy Stanley and Lane Jones craft their writing in a way that illustrates the points they want to make, so it’s an easy, engaging read. By likening the process of developing a speech to a journey, they tell the story of a trucker and his passenger discussing communication.

The first half of the book covers the authors’ major points while the second half elaborates on them. As with a trip, you must determine your dest
Al Garlando
Jul 09, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Pastors, preachers, Bible students
This is the sequel (sort of) to "7 Practices of Effective Ministry.
It will challenge the way you think about sermon preparation and delivery.
For me, it means a return to what I was originally taught regarding sermons, especially the difference between preaching and teaching.
Teaching is imparting information, whereas preaching is aimed at changing the listener.
To do you need to keep it simple. This maximises your impact and focus.
One of the "7 Practices" is expounded further in this book - Less f
Mar 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
For what it is, this small book is a fantastic introduction and guide to a tried and true style of preaching/teaching. The book teaches the principles and format of the Me/We/God/You/We method in two ways. Firstly, the book is written in narrative form, telling the story of a pastor who is given guidance by a wise veteran speaker. Secondly, the book takes the principles put forth in the narrative portion and expands and explains them in a more straight-forward manner. It is a short read, designe ...more
Aug 15, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: religious
This is really two books in one. While the first half narrative interested me, it was the second half's principles that really hit it home.

My style of speaking is on disseminating a lot of information, and I usually let my personality do the audience engagement. People pay attention, but there does not seem to be a lot of action after the fact. Some of these principles challenged me to be a more challenging speaker.

Stanly's writing is very easy to follow and he does make some valid points for a
Aug 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: preaching
Great insights into what it takes to preach for change in people. Stanley is unapologetic about his insistence that we preach one point, that connects with the audience and that we leave them something to do. As a life-long Christian and preachers kid, Stanley is completely unafraid of what people may say about his method. He believes this is crucial; lives are on the line. He shares his famous "me, we, God, you, we" technique as well as a host of important questions to ask when you get stuck. P ...more
Paul J
Feb 18, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I confess. I was tempted to be skeptical about another book on communication, and especially about preparing a message and delivering it. But I tried it. I began applying a few of the principles and I could not believe the response the audience had. Change was happening in hearts. It was so quiet, it was like you could hear it happening (I know that sounds contradictory). So, a big thank you to Andy Stanley for teaching this old dog some new tricks. It definitely has been worth it!
Jason Retherford
good book. very helpful for communicators to think through what they are doing. i was challenged, pushed and thinking of centering everything around one point is a new idea. i enjoyed reading how andy stanley fleshes out his ideas. it will be fun to try to incorporate his ideas to become a better speaker, a better communicator, a better travel guide.
May 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: communications
I have read numerous books over the years by Andy Stanley, he never disappoints. You want to get on track with delivering effective and relevant sermons/messages, then I highly recommend this book for you. Easy to read, yet immensely profound and practical. Enjoy the read!
John Richards
Dec 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Andy has a rather unique approach to preaching/communicating. A pretty easy read. His outlining method is something I'd like to try soon. ...more
Ross Slough
May 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Very helpful and practical for me personally. Also, Andy is such an authentic and conversational writer which made for a really fun read.
Ross Leikvoll
Mar 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely phenomenal book!! Definitely one of the best books I've ever read on communication! I couldn't recommend it more!! ...more
Matt Crawford
Oct 17, 2016 rated it it was ok
Told via a narrative this book is supposed to give tips on how to deliver a message but it seems more on how to present distractions so your audience is entertained
Susan Barnes
Feb 28, 2019 rated it it was ok
I had a mixed response to, Communicating for a Change by Andy Stanley. Some parts were very helpful, but other parts were not.

Andy Stanley is a strong believer in sermons having one main point, which is a helpful way of preparing a sermon. Other points add to the main point. He also spoke about having a goal and engaging your audience. He made valuable comments about these things. Andy would say the goal of preaching is to change lives, but for me, I would say my goal is to change minds. If peop
Michael Vincent
There are many good things I like about this book on preaching and communication. I was certainly challenged in many ways. So much of what he says is helpful and true. Preaching is about application and life change. We need to keep working at it. The story which was used in the first half of the book was fine. But throughout the book it comes across to me that Stanley does not value enough the power of the Word of God and the work of the Holy Spirit. So much seems to depend upon the performance ...more
Peter Yi
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For all preachers and different speakers!

First book I’ve read by Andy Stanley, and looking forward to more. I’ve heard him preach sermons a lot, but never picked up a book by him. Glad I started with this one.

It helped me clarify and work out transitions better, and keeping the audience engaged more. I put into practice the things I read on, and our people noticed. I was getting rusty in some areas after not preaching regularly for a long time, but this book was refreshing. And the Me-We-God-Yo
Robert Ssempande
Jan 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Andy Stanley and Lane Jones teach communicators a simple yet engaging and memorable way to communicate biblical truths to audiences for the result of life transformation or life change. With this method, they say, you must pick a point (one singular point you’re going to communicate), create a map that leads you to that point, internalize the message (because it is important and lives depend on it), engage your audience (so that they stay tuned and remember your message), and find your voice (be ...more
Sep 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: work

Stanley uses the extended metaphor of a truck driver delivering a load to illustrate some principles of communication. The metaphor helps make these principles memorable and relatable.

Summary of concepts:

+ 7 principles of communicating for a change:
1. Determine your goal
- If your goal is behavior change, pick a single-point message. If you have more than one point, deliver more than one message over time. If your goal is information transfer, it’s okay to have multiple points.
2. Pick a point
- A
David Kelstrup
Jun 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
So this book is one of many great books on communication.

It's main and only focus is preaching a single point message and the tools to do so.

The book has 2 parts which is working together greatly.

part 1 is a story about a pastor named Ray who are having some difficulty reaching people with his message. A businessman helps him on a journey with an elderly preacher named Will and we are just passengers on these two's journey together and get to hear the Will's simple tools to help Ray unfold his
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Preaching Styles/personality 1 4 Jun 10, 2014 07:23AM  

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Andy Stanley is the senior pastor of North Point Community Church, Buckhead Church, and Browns Bridge Community Church. He also founded North Point Ministries, which is a worldwide Christian organization.

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Here’s some trivia for your next vacation get-together: The concept of the summer “beach read” book goes all the way back to the Victorian...
22 likes · 10 comments
“So what do you do when you are stuck?

The first thing I do when I am stuck is pray. But I’m not talking about a quick, Help me Lord, Sunday’s a comin’ prayer. When I get stuck I get up from my desk to head for my closet. Literally. If I‘m at the office I go over to a corner that I have deemed my closet away from home. I get on my knees and remind God that this was not my idea, it was His…

None of this is new information to God…

Then I ask God to show me if there is something He wants to say to prepare me for what He wants me to communicate to our congregation. I surrender my ideas, my outline and my topic. Then I just stay in that quiet place until God quiets my heart…

Many times I will have a breakthrough thought or idea that brings clarity to my message. . .

Like you, I am simply a mouthpiece. Getting stuck is one way God keeps me ever conscious of that fact.”
“Preaching is not talking to people about the Bible; it is talking to people about themselves from the Bible.” 7 likes
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