Your church has a reputation – good or bad. Most of the time it’s in between – neither good nor bad, which is really the problem.
In Revelation one of the churches was warned that God wanted them to either be hot or cold, not lukewarm. Most church experiences in America seem to be that way as you listen to people describe churches. Words like boring, out of touch, dated, irrelevant to my life come to mind when I hear these conversations.
For me, there are five words I hope people can use to describe their experience at The Gathering each week.
1. Fresh. By fresh I mean current, contemporary, the look, the feel, the style, the conversation, the teaching style, music, and signage all feel like it’s in the now, contemporary with how people look and feel, and interpret experiences.
2. Engaging. The music is engaging. Any announcement we might choose to offer pulls people into an opportunity, not just something they have to endure listening to. The teaching is engaging, the atmosphere, the music that we go in and out with, the information tables, and the people, are all engaging. They capture my interest. You might even say, entertaining.
3. Energetic. By that I am not advocating a loud, frenetic, never-ending string of loud music and movement. But there is energy in the people as they come in. There is laughter, talking, and there is a buzz about the place.
4. Compelling. The subject we’re dealing with, for example the present series we’re in, “We Don’t Do Fear,” defining who we are in a bad news world. We want that subject to be compelling. If it doesn’t have the possibility of being compelling it shouldn’t be used.
5. Transformative. That is, lives are changed. That’s the bottom line. Numbers matter, budgets matter, numbers of people serving matter, all of those things matter but they pale in comparison to the question, “Are lives truly being changed as people experience the living Christ and converted from the inside out by the power of the Holy Spirit?”
Think about these words: fresh, engaging, energetic, compelling, and transformative. Do these words describe the experience people are going to have in your church tomorrow? If not, they should be your new goals and you should do everything you can to hit them.