Creating a “Come and See” Church Culture is Critical!

Creating a “Come and See” Church Culture is Critical!

The way that you evaluate your ministry environments establishes the culture for the rest of your church. Your church is a conglomeration of ministry environments. Parking lot, hallways, children’s rooms, check-in process, greeting, worship experience, etc are all ministry environments. Every environment communicates a message. The message of your environment speaks so loudly that it can sometimes overcome the message that’s being communicated from the pulpit.

The Gospel is offensive but other things in our church shouldn’t be. The responsibility of the pastor/speaker is to be offensive. Every ministry environment needs to define the win. Make sure there is a filter for everyone to use to evaluate the experiences that happens in the environments that your church creates. It won’t look the same for every church. At the macro level answer this question, “What does is it mean to have a great ministry environment?” When everyone evaluates through the same grid, you accidentally create a culture of evaluation where everyone is evaluating through the same lens. If you don’t tell people how to measure success in their ministry environment, they will default to numbers. We can end up rewarding things that don’t match our values if we don’t have a standard. The word our church uses to evaluate is the word irresistible. We want to create irresistible environments… so people say, “Wow! I’ve got to come back and bring a friend.” What does an irresistible environment look like?

1 – An appealing setting

Setting is the physical environment. All ministry takes place in a physical environment. Settings create first impressions. First impressions matter. An appealing setting speaks to people. Settings for 20-30 year olds are HUGE. They are sensitive to physical environments. Starbucks gets it, restaurants get it, churches don’t. An uncomfortable or distracting setting can derail ministry before it begins. •            Physical environments impact people. Every physical environment communicates something.

Cleanliness communicates, “we were expecting you.” Organization communicates, “we are serious about what you are doing here.” Check out the book The eMyth. What people see says something to them. A business that looks orderly communicates that people know what they are doing. Safety matters. Design, decor, and attention to detail communicate what and who you value most. Design, decor, and attention to detail communicate whether or not you were expecting new people. The sermon begins in the parking lot. Periodically, we all need fresh eyes on our ministry environments.

What are some questions we should ask?

1. Are our ministry settings appealing to your target audience?

2. Does the design, decor, and attention to detail of your environments reflect what and who is most important to you?

3. What’s starting to look tired?

2 – An Engaging Presentation

Engaging presentations are central to the success of our mission. Presenting the Gospel is a primary responsibility of the church. “Teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you” is the unique responsibility of the church (Matthew 28:20) To engage is to secure one’s attention. Generally speaking, it’s the presentation that makes information interesting. Great presenters know how to make information people already know what’s interesting. An audience’s attention span is determined by the quality of the presentation. Engaging presentations require engaging presentations or an engaging means of

presentation. The presenters present, let the content creators create. Create a system that gives you the flexibility to surface your best presenters and content creators. What we are presenting is too important to fool around with. We need engaging presenters.

What are some questions we should ask?

1. Is your culture characterized by a relentless commitment to engaging presentations at every level of the organization?

2. Does your system allow you to put your best presenters in your most strategic presentation environments?

3. Are your presenters evaluated and coached?

4. Does your system create opportunities for your best content creators to partner with your presenters?

3 – Helpful Content

Helpful = Useful. Truth isn’t enough. Matthew 7 – “everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice…” Helpful content is content that directly addresses the issues of thinking and living. Content should be age and stage-of-life specific. Information that does not address a felt need is perceived as irrelevant. All Scripture is equally inspired but is not equally applicable. Information that isn’t perceived as useful is perceived as irrelevant. Irrelevant doesn’t stick.

What are some questions we should ask?

1. Is your content helpful?

2. Do your content creators and communicators understand that the goals are renewed minds and changed behaviors?

3. Is your content age and stage-of-life specific?

Conclusion: Creating a “Come and See” environment for your church is critical. It has eternal consequences.

Of every environment, program, and production, we must ask:

1. Was the context appealing?

2. Was the presentation engaging?

3. Was the content helpful?

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