storySometimes we take Bible storytelling to kids for granted. After all, they’re kids right? They follow along wherever you take them. What choice do they have? So we put anyone on stage, hand the person a Bible, and say “Go!”

Truth be told, that just doesn’t cut it. Telling the Greatest Story Ever Told deserves more than slap on the back and a “you can do it” to reach into the hearts of young ones. We need to know what we’re doing.

Sharing the Bible story in church (or wherever) should be treated with both respect and care for the art of storytelling. While people spend years developing the craft of making words come to life in the imaginations of people everywhere, there are a few simple ideas that you can use that will help you tell a great story. Over the next few days we’ll unpack a few those ideas. First up, the fine art of memorization.

Memorize the words, but make them your own.

You can’t effectively share the story unless you know the story.

Most storytellers have some sort of script they either wrote themselves or borrowed from a curriculum or script. While someone probably a good deal of time crafting those exact words, as the storyteller, you still must make them feel like your own. Of course there will be some phrases that you’ll want to deliver word for word (bottom lines or REALLY good sentences), but for the most part get the story in your head and deliver it.

If you try and memorize every single word on the page, you’ll be worrying about every single word. The story might come across as stiff and robotic. Making the story your own will make it feel comfortable and engaging.

Try this:

Rather than memorize every single word on the page, memorize the big ideas of the story that keep it moving. This will force you to find the best way for you to tell the story.

If there are key phrases that you need to capture, rehearse not only the words but how you want to deliver them. If you’re getting caught up on the exact words and tone of voice in rehearsal, chances are you’ll get hung up in the “performance” as well. Make sure that the delivery of those specific phrases from the script is as clean as the ones that come from your own head.

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