Thursday, June 26, 2008

Welcome Series...Part 3

Welcome Ministries...Part 3 in our series! I have posted twice before about it, here and here, if you want to go read them before we get started.

Today I want to talk about the experience. One of the things we do in Welcome Ministries is plan the "experience" that we want our guests to, well, experience.

It is important to point out that we are not stagging the experience. There is a difference.

You have watched movies, such as Ground Hog Day, where the main character has stagged the whole day to win the girl, because he has practiced it to perfection. The girl clearly does not have a chance, because he is playing on her every desire.

That is clearly NOT what we want to do. We do not want to "trick" people into a relationship with Christ. That would be both wrong and immoral.

What we want to do is simply remove the obstacles that prevent them from finding Christ. How do we do that? We plan the experience.

We dream big. We dream of a great experience that would allow people to find Christ and His loving grace. Once we have done this, then we begin to find the the things that would distract from that experience and eliminate them.

How do we plan experience? We ask a lot of questions and pray...a lot! Who am I to determine what our guests should experience. What works for me, may not work for you. However, when you ask questions...of our guests and regular attenders you learn what works. When you bring in a secret shopper to evaluate the church "systems" you learn what doesn't work. When you take those things to prayer together you learn what God wants for your church...I hope.

In the end, no matter how hard we prepare, it is God at work that makes the difference. All we can do is prepare our fields for rain...and then pray for rain!

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