We’re off to visit another church, this time with family, the first visit for everyone. When they opened two years ago, they conducted a smart direct-mail campaign to the community. They’re a portable church that meets at a nearby middle school.
Consider these discussion questions about Church 67.
1. The church is three-quarters of a mile away. We could walk but talk ourselves out of it.
Are we willing to attend a church near our home? Are we willing to walk there?
2. They are a satellite location of an established church. Each site has a teaching pastor and worship team, with centralized governance and financial control.
How willing are we to try new ways to reach more people for Jesus?
3. As we move inside the facility, two men interrupt their conversation to welcome us.
Are we willing to stop talking with people we know to meet those we don’t?
4. People chat with friends before the service begins. Soft music plays in the background. The atmosphere strikes a pleasing balance between sitting in stoic silence and an overwhelming rush of activity.
How can we best prepare to worship God?
5. As we wait for the service, the interlude is pleasant. Though worshipful, the subdued ambience of the indirect lighting makes it hard to read the literature they gave us.
How can we best set the right mood for worship?
6. The space fills. All age groups show up, but the demographics skew younger, with many families present.
What does the makeup of our church say about us? What does it foreshadow about our church’s future?
7. We learn about Breaking Bread, where three individuals or families meet three times in three months around a shared meal. This helps people get to know others and form connections.
What can we do to better connect with others?
8. During the message, I jot down a soundbite: “Know your community.” This makes sense. If we’re going to reach our neighbors, we must understand them.
How can we better know the people in our community?
9. The pastor provides a three-step process to engage people: 1) talk to them, 2) ask them a question, 3) invite them to do something (a meal, outing, or service opportunity).
What can we do to engage people?
10. The service ends, and two things happen. Most people pick up their chair, collapse it, and stow it on a nearby rack. Others come up to talk.
What happens at our church when the service ends?
11. I long to go to church in my community and attend with my neighbors, instead of driving several minutes to church in someone else’s neighborhood and worshiping with other commuters.
How important is making spiritual connections where we live?
[Read about Church 67 or start at the beginning of our journey.]
If you feel it’s time to move from the sidelines and get into the game, The More Than 52 Churches Workbook provides the plan to get you there.
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.
Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.