The church is an alternative. And an alternative, clearly and effectively presented, will do far better than simply saying we’re better than something you weren’t interested in in the first place.
So true confession. A decade ago we drove a car on stage to get people’s attention.
We also built elaborate sets for every series hoping it would captivate people.
And all of this did. For a season.
But I also came to realize that whatever you use to attract people is what you need to use to keep people.
‘Gimmicks’ every week get old fast.
If you play the ‘next Sunday will be better than last Sunday game,’ you eventually end up losing and lying (because it can’t be).
In addition, eventually people ask, “So what? So what if next Sunday is a little bit better than last Sunday? What’s this all about anyway?”
Don’t get me wrong. We still have fun moments, powerful moments, surprising moments and memorable moments, but they’re moments.
We’ve stripped down our services and moved back to more of the basics: the Gospel, engaging moments and engaging messages.
We can sustain that. And the basics, done really well (with a little extra from time to time), really do engage people.
Why? Because Jesus, authentically and clearly presented, engages people.
5. Inauthentic leadership
This is one of the most significant church fails. People’s fake detectors are set at a higher level than ever.