Andy Griffith was a great story teller. Watch this if you don’t believe me:
Unless it comes natural, you may not want to adopt his southern drawl, but we preachers could learn something from the way that Andy could tell a story. Notice how he occasionally slips into a present tense as he tells the story. It’s terrible grammar but it captivates a listener.
Phil Campbell would agree:
Odd as it seems, translating narrative into the present tense makes a story seem real and immediate—it’s just like being there. Retell a biblical narrative with present tense verbs, and something refreshing happens. The same applies to illustrations. You can take your listeners back in time and put them right inside the action just by adjusting the tenses…they look, he whispers, he says. It’s alive! Keeping narratives in the past tense coats everything with dust.
For this and other helpful preaching tips consider picking up a copy of Saving Eutychus by Gary Millar and Phil Campbell.