I was sitting in class today and I had a thought: what if churches had a focus group. If we are really trying to be effective evangelists, wouldn’t it be an interesting idea to bring in a “focus group” to see what we are doing wrong and how we are not effectively reaching visitors.
It is an interesting idea. What if only two or three people knew this group was coming in and they came in as visitors, genuinely evaluating us as visitors do. It is almost like the tv show where people hire professionals to break into their house and see if it can be broken into. The interesting thing about the show is that after these people effectively break in, they help the people fix it and make it stronger.
What if professional visitors came in, evaluated us, saw our weak spots, our strengths, where we fall short, and then helped us fix it in order to become stronger?
In order for this to happen, a church would need to be open to criticism, change, and discussion. Companies do a lot of evaluations in order to be effective. I think the church can embrace some of these concepts in order to be effective and in order to grow. Albert Einstein said, “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” The church cannot keep doing the same things and expect different results. If something does not work, evaluate and change it. If you are going to have goals and strategies, then you need to be okay with evaluating those things and changing them if they are not working and meeting your goals.
In order to grow and change we need to recognize the problems. One idea to do this would be “Undercover Visitors,” almost like a “Secret Shopper.” Who better to come in and evaluate us than the people we are trying to reach?