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Churches too often think that the worship experience starts with the morning prayer. There are some churches, however, who view that the moment you step out of your car as the point when the worship experience begins. If your church begins to view worship in this way, will that not change the way people experience your church once they have one foot out of the car. If you want people to experience Christ the moment they are in the parking lot, then everything starts to matter so much more. If you want to have a car-to-car worship experience, then there are suddenly several things you need to think about.
The Parking Lot—Is parking easy? Do we have guest spaces? Do we need shuttles to make things easier? Is it safe? Do we need staff in the parking lot?
Greeters—Are our greeters trained and ready to welcome all people and direct them where they need to go? Are they attentive? Are they kind and welcoming?
Information—Is our info center easy to find and are the people welcoming and knowledgeable? Do we have all the information that people may ask for?
Signs and Maps—Is everything well-labeled? Easy to find? Is our building overly complicated? Do we need a map? Are classrooms labeled and times and subjects posted?
Hallways—Are hallways clean? Do the posters we put up look good and represent the themes and style of the church?
People—Are there people throughout the church to answer questions and direct people where they need to go? Are we warm and welcoming but not overwhelming?
*see how much there is? And we have not even gotten into the sanctuary yet.
Sanctuary—Is our sanctuary warm and inviting? Do we have people around to help visitors find seats? Are there people in each section to welcome people they do not recognize?
Welcome—Do we have a welcoming time for people to reach out and greet one another? Do we extend a special welcome to visitors? Do we have a chance to interact with visitors by having them fill out an information car?
Service—Do we have a service that is easy to follow and understand? Do we communicate our message effectively and consistently?
Closing—Do we give an invitation? Give a call to action to a next step? When walking out of the sanctuary, are guests still interacted with? Is there a guest package to be given to visitors?
Leaving—Is it easy to get out of the building? The parking lot? Is there a spoken invitation to come back?
There are many multiple other questions under these categories, and these are not even all the categories that need consideration. So much more effort goes into a viewpoint like this, and when so much goes into it, people are bound to get even more out of it.
Service of a congregation propels church growth. A church cannot grow if a church is not behind it 300%. You can only send out so many flyers, put up so many ads. Real change begins when the people (the true church) get out and evangelize and represent their church and serve. Serving in the children’s area makes it better, you form connections, and it will grow. The church member that serves by mowing the lawn is helping the church grow. They make sure the church looks presentable and that the best face of the church is put forward. No service is too small. I talked the other day about the parking lot being expanded and redone at my church, well today I went out and helped. When I was helping, I knew that this parking lot was going to help the church grow. In service, we increase the chances that our church will grow. A congregation fuels growth through its acts of service. A church without an active and serving congregation will not grow, it might not even survive.