One writer noted that the most effective sermons are preached on tip-toe. In an article written nearly a century ago, he compared two evangelists who had been invited to address soldiers at a military base.
One preached a wonderful sermon full of spiritual truth and intellectual food for thought. It would have been welcomed in the pulpit of any great evangelical church in America. But there were no results among the soldier boys. It lacked heart and warmth. The preacher kept his facts with his feet on solid ground and I enjoyed it, but the soldiers were bored and left him by scores until he did not have half an audience.
The sermon of the other preacher was not half as good in material or in intellectual or spiritual insight. In fact, the next morning one of the army chaplains told me that he would not like to see in print such a common sort of talk and call it a sermon. It was rather weak in logic and in spiritual discernment. But it got the boys and led literally hundreds of them to confess Christ. Why? He preached with the deepest heart earnestness and longing for the lives of the men before him. He was possessed with a passion which put his soul on tip-toe in his anxiety to lead men to God. And they felt it and they responded to that appeal.2