Throughout this blog our team of brothers reach out to their
fellow spiritual leaders aiding them in their time of need.


Brothers In Arms Blog

BROTHERS \ noun plural: men who share a parent in common
IN \ preposition: used as function word to indicate purpose
ARMS \ noun: weapons\verb: to furnish with weapons



10 Reasons I Can Hardly Wait

to come back to your church!

This is not a theological discussion, it’s a practical one for leaders who want to think about ways to reach people for Jesus Christ. Imagine how exciting it is to discover churches actively seeking to be spiritually “in tune”, Kingdom of God-centric, and attractive to newcomers at the same time. This piece is based on several churches that each have long lists of “atta-church” credits to their collective name.

The visitors who reported these findings are many, and this digest of their comments speaks to the ways in which we can reach people who might otherwise disappear back into the non-churched masses.

1. I had my curiosity about God pumped and prodded. I didn’t think God was all that interesting and I certainly didn’t think God was interested in me.

A truly inviting church always manages to convey the idea that God is not just historical, but relevant to our time and culture. Our talk about God needs to include the history we’re all living through together, as in, “What do you think God wants us to do about this in the coming week?”

2. You didn’t talk down to me.

“Holier than thou,” is more than a well-worn phrase. In some churches it’s a creed! It can be as subtle as carrying a huge Bible (or three) to church or only talking in God-slang when you’re on church property. Strangers sometimes feel judged before they even walk in the door.

3. You welcomed me without smothering me.

In our desire to make disciples, we sometimes make deserters out of guests who flee from our confining zealousness.
Welcoming and suffocating with good intentions are two very different things.

4. I liked that the signage was so clear, I didn’t have to ask a lot of questions and it made me feel more independent.

There’s a subtle line between being a hovering host and being the kind of host who says, “Welcome, take a look around and ask anybody anything. We’re always happy to help.”

5. I liked your music. You didn’t seem to be trying to impress me, but I was impressed!

There are lots of churches priding themselves on their great music. That’s a good thing. Surprisingly though, visitors can usually tell the difference between sincerity and raw manipulation. In the former, they are free to participate. In the latter, they usually come out with mixed feelings.

6. I really liked the fact that your pastor hung around after the service for a long time.

Even if you have multiple services to lead on any given day, taking time to be available is a sign of church leadership dedicated to serving people and their needs. There are even pastors in humongous churches who hang out afterwards for long, long periods of time, wunderkind Joel Osteen among them.

7. I was never made to feel guilty for the years I have spent ignoring the church.

You may disagree, but grace is always a better starting place than judgment. The Holy Sprit doesn’t need our help or advice on how to convict the human heart.

8. It felt good to be comfortably dressed for your service.

Many folks who haven’t been to church in several years are unaware that it’s less formal than it used to be. In a church where all “responsible” attire is welcomed, people will cross that off their list of “religious don’ts” which may have kept them away previously.

9. I found myself more content and less scattered than I have been for a very long time.

Sometimes, in our attempt to keep people “engaged” in worship, we also keep squirting huge amounts of adrenaline into them. In the 80’s we used to call it “happy clappy” worship. Interestingly, one of the most engaging things we have to offer is disengagement, or the slowing of the constant stimulus our congregations and guests are subjected to in our ADD culture.

10. I was pretty impressed that there was someone in the parking lot welcoming people as they headed toward the church.

We welcome, then we welcome, then we welcome…
…then we say, “You’re welcome!”


Categories: Doing Church Comments: 2


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