The newer building doesn’t look like a typical church. The sanctuary is open and inviting, with a comfortable feel. But what we will soon learn is that people make the difference.
Consider these four discussion questions about Church #41:
1. “Hi, are you the DeHaans?” The usher’s question surprises me. Either he looked up Candy’s picture online or he assumed the new people matched the name in her email. Though this might be off-putting to some, the extra effort impresses me.
How can you honor a visitor (without going too far)?
2. The area is in a flu epidemic. The minister gives us permission to avoid hugs and handshakes. He suggests an “elbow bump,” which I’m happy to do, but most people don’t follow his suggestion.
How easy is it to adjust your normal practices when there’s a good reason to do so?
3. Bits of liturgy occur throughout the service. The words, printed in their oversized bulletins, also appear overhead. I so appreciate this.
How can you help people better participate in your service?
4. Afterward we enjoy an engaging conversation with a lady as we share our faith journeys. Only later do we learn she’s visiting too.
What does it say about you and your church when it’s visitors who connect with other visitors? What must change?
Our key memory from this church is that the people make the difference in our experience.
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.