Much of Jesus’ preaching and teaching was showing his listeners his points rather than just saying them. He used sermon illustrations all the time. And we should too.
Often times, though, it can be a struggle to come up with good sermon illustrations. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
The Prerequisite for Finding Good Sermon Illustrations
There is a caveat to this, a prerequisite if you will. In order to find good sermon illustrations, we must be curious. Without an immense curiosity about life, we’ll continue to struggle to find sermon illustrations that are impactful. But with an immense curiosity, we’ll never run out of sermon illustration ideas.
If we develop our curiosity muscles, we’ll be able to properly leverage the following sources for sermon illustrations.
Let’s dive in.
20 of the Best Sources for Sermon Illustrations
Need illustrations on specific topics? We’ve got you covered.
This is a site to bookmark. Like now. One new illustration idea, Monday – Friday.
3. Your Own Life
Nothing beats sharing a personal story that illustrates your point. Nothing.
Read more books and you’ll get more illustrations. Capture them and use them.
5. Movies and TV Shows
If you watch movies or television shows, start looking for illustrations. They’re in there.
6. Children’s Books
These can be great sources for illustrations that are already set up for a point.
Pay attention to the lyrics and you’ll notice that your favorite songs are full of usable illustrations.
8. Ask Social Media
Ask your friends on social media questions. Start a poll. Ask them for an example of a time when they experienced ______. You can get creative and have a lot of fun with it.
9. I Am Second
These are powerful stories of life change. I often weave one of these throughout an entire message as the modern day parable alongside the main text. Here’s an example.
10. Faith It
You’ll find an abundance of stories about life and faith here.
This is a Christian living website that has a ton of content. Many of their articles could be used as anecdotes.
12. Pew Research
Research on the issues, attitudes, and trends shaping the world.
Stories about Christians throughout history.
Pop culture illustrations galore!
With over 50,000 illustrations, you’re bound to find some good ones here.
Tons of illustrations on many different topics.
Lots of illustrations on topics A-Z.
Inspirational stories for your sermon.
Search by topic or book of the Bible.
Over 16,000 illustrations sorted by topic.
There you have it. Be curious. Look for illustrations everywhere. And go show while you tell.
Brandon Kelley is a pastor at The Crossing on the east side of Cincinnati. He is the managing editor of Ministry Pass, co-founder of RookiePreacher.com, and the author of Preaching Sticky Sermons. You can connect with him on Twitter @BrandonKelley_.