A man with an unsmiling face stood at the dimly-lit lectern of the large church. In the sing-song-not¬ordinary voice many use in preaching, he read from the Bible. The congregation sat politely silent. The sonorous voice droned on. The listeners' attention was lost after the first few verses. His 'reverent' but monotonous voice finished, "Here endeth the second lesson". The reading was over - and forgotten.
The same words read as they are meant to be are living, powerful, surgically sharp and effective. But it means work. Another man spent two hours preparing the chapter to be read. There was a glow inside him when he realised that the meaning of the passage was clearer in his mind than ever before. He marked his Bible for emphasis and pauses, read the chapter, recording it on his cassette player and listening to it back. As he did this his pen marked one place where he had overlooked a contrast, another where a pause would make the meaning clearer.
In the church his face was relaxed in a smile, his eyes greeted his listeners as he told them the book and chapter from which he was reading. (He had checked the microphone before the service.)
People listened as he read clearly, enthusiastically in a normal voice. They heard, understood and appreciated as their ears and eyes were held by a reader who loved God and His word and prepared the reading as carefully as he would a talk.
Reading to others, sounding natural, and making the meaning clear is easy - if you work at it. The clues are in this book. They'll work for you, if you work for them. Owning a tool does not make you an expert, but using it produces results. The more you use it the better the results. The rewards go to those who persist.

WHEN READING ALOUD
Keep your finger on the place.
Make sure the people in the back can hear. Have someone there to signal you should your voice fade.
Check the microphone - don't tap it, blow gently on it - Make sure it is turned on.
Check your distance from the mike - generally a span.
Articulate words from your lips.
Listen to your practice reading on your cassette recorder. (You may not like what you hear! Don't blame the recorder.)

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