In his book, Communicating for a Change, Pastor Andy Stanley talks about using this “map” as a way to powerfully communicate a message. You can see him put this outlining method to good use in examples like Winning and Born to Run.
The Me-We-God-You-We Method has two main facets: First, it’s designed to help you communicate one big idea from a particular passage of Scripture. Second, it’s conversational, meaning that you’re connecting with your audience and engage with them in the way you would if you were talking one-on-one.
It works for a variety of topics and is especially handy in helping ensure your sermon doesn’t take on a holier-than-thou tone since you start by pinpointing your own struggles.
Here’s how you can use the Me-We-God-You-We method for your own sermons:
- Determine your main text. This method centers around illuminating one main passage of Scripture. You can use supporting verses, but the bulk of your sermon should be focused on one main text.
- Focus on one idea. Just as you’ll be preaching from one text, all the elements of this method will circle back to the one main idea you’re trying to communicate to your listeners. Knowing what this is before you start will make your planning process much smoother.
- Craft the “Me” section by answering the question, “How do I struggle with this?” Providing stories or examples from your life is a great way to connect with listeners and establish both the main idea and the conversational tone.
- Write the first “We” section by answering the question, “How do we all struggle with this?” You can naturally flow from the specific (your struggle) to the more general (your audience’s struggles) by asking them if they’ve ever experienced the same thing. Sharing statistics or stories of people you’ve known can help you speak directly to your audience and demonstrate that you have a larger understanding of the issue than just your own problems, and you’re inviting them to see themselves in your message.
- Point them to God by answering the question, “What does the Bible say about this?” Once you’ve found common ground and established that the problem you’re discussing is universal, you’re ready to move on to what God has to say about your topic. This is where you read Bible passage and really delve into the teaching, by explaining what it means and how it relates to your main idea. This section is the heart of your sermon, and you’ll probably spend the most time developing it.
- Challenge them to apply what they’ve learned. Also known as the “You,” section, you’ll be answering the question, “What should you do about this?” You might have a specific challenge for your entire congregation, or, more likely, you’ll have a few suggestions they can select, based on their particular struggles.
- Create a vision of a better future. This is the second “We” section, and you’ll craft it by answering the questions “How can we all live this out together?” and “What would the world look like if everyone lived this way?” Be specific about what would change in people’s lives, your community, and the world, if everyone followed God’s Word in this way.
We’ve received permission to include this template in Sermonary and using this format is beautifully easy if you subscribe to the platform. Just open the editor, click “The Me-We-God-You-We” method and the software will walk you through the steps of outlining and writing your sermon!