At the beginning of the calendar year, I started a project to digitize all my sermon notes, which I think will have the following advantages:
- My notes will finally be searchable. Looking for a sermon by Chris Hamilton? Easy as CTRL-F.
- I won’t have to worry anymore about losing all my notes if I spill water on my notebook. (I realize that I’ll have a similar problem if I spill water on my laptop, but let’s assume that I back my computer up regularly.) Also, in case of a fire, I can just grab my laptop and I’ll have all of my sermon notes with me.
- I’m re-meditating through all my old sermon notes, finding things that are freshly convicting. There are some things that I haven’t grown in, though I’ve wanted to. There are some things that I need to grow in now that I’m a few years older, approaching a different stage of life.
- Nostalgia. Sometimes I can remember where I was and what was going on around the time of a particular sermon. (Fine, so this one’s not really an advantage.)
I’m writing all this because I’m making my sermon notes available on this blog. A few caveats, especially on my first year (2011-2012): I joined GOC partway through winter quarter, so I only have about a quarter’s worth of sermon notes in here. Also, these aren’t transcripts–I only wrote down the things that were important to me, which might leave something to be desired, since I was a new Christian at the time. That being said, if you’d like to read through my Grace on Campus and Grace Community Church sermon notes, you can download them as a .docx or .pdf file.
Here’s one thing I realized while digitizing my notes: if I’m spending the time to write sermon notes by hand, I should be taking the time to go through them again and meditate on them. Sure, part of why I write things down is to remember them better, but since I’ve created a permanent record of the sermons, I can make even better use of my notes if I think through them again at a later point. I’m not saying it’s necessary, but it seems like a poor use of my time if I only write notes for every sermon so that I can look up notes on just a few of them when I’m studying a particular passage or topic.