Among our church board the topic of Church attendance has been a big discussion lately. We have read every book on the subject. Though books like Purpose Driven Church, Becoming a Contagious Christian, and Sticky Church all have their good points we have found that none of them really deal with what we feel to be the big issue the fear of God. I mean let’s face it this is like the Holy Grail of church growth issues. We knew that if our board could overcome this one successfully and tastefully all of our attendance problems would be fixed. Well we found it but before I share our plan with you here are some of the things we knew we needed to overcome.
- Guilt: People are coming to church high on life they don’t need a guilt trip buzzkill. We knew that if we could overcome any sense that a person is accountable to a living God this would be one big step in the right direction.
- Conviction: A ton of people have expressed that they just really need us to back off on the whole conviction thing. They want a church experience that allows them to observe what’s right without really feeling that they need to do anything about it.
- Time: Listen Church is long we all know that. Two hours on a Sunday morning is a huge time commitment. We did the calculations. There are 168 hours in a week. If a person commits two of those hours to learning about and worshiping God that’s like 1.190476% of your week. Wha? That’s like two episodes of Downton Abbey or 10 beers. We understand and I think we have solved the problem.
- Pain: Since the church basically exists to remove sin we understand that this process is painful. Basically you don’t have to go to Church it’s not a law or anything. You can’t really measure sin or even see it sometimes unless you go to Church and listen to the loud guy up front with that magnifying glass of a Bible right? Ouch! We have found that one of the biggest reasons people don’t want to come back to church is the fear of the pain that comes from the very difficult process of sin removal.
Well as Pastor I was given the task of implementing a new strategy that would address all of these issues without compromising our teaching and doctrine. I wrestled with it for about a week and then it hit me. I was listening to this commercial about a new kind of dentistry called “Sedation Dentistry”. I was overwhelmed with how similar a Church experience is to a dentist experience. Apparently you show up to the Dentist’s office now and they will just knock you out with some type of coma inducing drug. The dentist doesn’t have to be the bad guy anymore and everyone is happy. So starting next week at the Christ E&R Church in Hardin, Montana every Sunday we will have certified “Church Assistants” that will basically give you a pillow and a heavy sedative for you to relax while the awful painful, guilt ridden, convicting time commitment of Church is being performed on you. No more worry. No more conviction to get in your way. No more pain. Just pure comfort. We think you will enjoy coming to Church again. Don’t worry for those of you who still love the guilt, conviction, time commitment and pain all you have to do is simply let one of our “Church Assistants” know you’re not interested.
We are calling this ground breaking innovation “Sedation Church”. Are you afraid of God and His Church? Allow our “Sedation Church” to usher you into a relaxing Church experience.