This wonderful observation by this fine young man should serve as a reminder to all of us about what really matters most. It caused me to think about why people choose to attend a church.
Sometimes people go to church because of the programs/ministries offered by the church. In my mind this seems to be the deciding factor for most people in our day. They like the Youth program, children’s program, college program, singles program, program for young families, Education programs, sports programs, etc. Of course this will vary depending on the life stage one finds themselves in at the time.
Sometimes people choose a church because of the number of people in their age group. They are looking for people who are at or near their place in life.
Sometimes people choose a church based on the opportunities to be involved or the ability to not be involved. They want to participate in the worship services and other programs.
Some choose a church based on the size of the church. Through the years people have said that they want to be a part of a smaller church because they can be more involved or because it provides more of a family atmosphere. We have also heard from some through the years that they want to be a part of a larger church because there are more programs from which they can choose.
Some choose a church based on the facilities or the building.
Some people choose a church because of the preaching. Some people like a “polished” preacher who is an excellent speaker. Others like a preacher who is hard-nosed, no-nonsense, you know one who tells it like it is.
According to a Barna Research survey from a few years back here are the top nine reasons that people choose a church:
- 58% - Doctrine/Theology
- 53% - People Caring for Each Other
- 52% - Preaching
- 45% - Friendliness
- 45% - Children’s Programs
- 43% - Helping the Poor
- 36% - Denomination
- 35% - Like the Preacher
- 26% - Sunday School
This survey is very revealing and it tells us a lot about what people are looking for in a church. Of course learning that people attend a church because they “like the Preacher,” is number eight on the list stings a littleJ
I’m not sure what all of this means, but it does remind us that people think deeply about the kind of church they will attend. It should cause us to pause and think about how we reach out to those who visit our services.
I am glad to know that my young friend likes the Lewisville church because of the people. I pray that in all of our churches that the people will be friendly, warm, and welcoming.
If we act as if we are glad to be present and that we love one another it will go a long way in helping people decide to worship with us.
Dear Father, help us to be people who are winsome and attractive to those who do not know Jesus. Help us to reach out to those around us with love and compassion. Help us, dear God to show the love of Jesus to everyone around us. In Jesus Wonderful Name we pray, Amen.