Church leaders are lamenting declining attendance and seeking creative ways to get people into their buildings. Preachers are even going to where the people are…imagine that! (Sounds suspiciously like something Jesus did.) But the goal appears to ultimately get people into their “worship services.” (We seem to forget that we are the “called out” not the “called in.”)
I hate to break it to you, but that’s not going to work. People have better things to do with their time than to file into an auditorium, sing a few songs, listen to a few prayers, observe a few rituals, pay homage to a few traditions and listen to a monologue that may or may not be relevant…all the while staring at the back of the heads seated in front of them.
Some pin their hopes of getting people into their auditoriums on hiring a hotshot young Osteen-like preacher and a rockin’ band led by a highly talented choreographer/director/producer. Unfortunately, without a large membership and a large budget, small congregations are left out in the cold.
The only way to increase attendance in assemblies is something any church of any size can do: fulfill their intended purpose namely, to build up our fellow disciples. What we are doing now is just not cutting it. When our assemblies become focused on encouragement, enlightenment and stirring up one another to love and good works…our assemblies will be packed.