Yesterday I met with someone who asked about my message that morning. I insist that you can't embrace the reality of the cross and pursue the security of success at the same time. I also said that we could increase the attendance at our church as well as the giving, but I can't prioritize that with a clear conscience if I hold Jesus Christ and him crucified at the center of all I believe and do. This person asked, "What would you do, if you felt free to do it, that would increase the attendance and giving?
" I've thought about it, and I came up with a rather cynical (yes, I know... unusual for me) list of 10 things you could do to achieve better attendance and giving:
- Don't allow people to participate in the worship band or any other prominent, visible ministry who don't have excellent attendance and who don't tithe.
- Befriend the good, consistent supporters and avoid those who aren't these things. Everyone wants to be in the inner circle.
- Reward those who give with frequent public recognition and praise.
- Teach that giving to the church is what gets God acting on our behalf.
- Always concoct the impression that something great is just about to happen so that the level of anticipation keeps people coming, expecting the special event to happen at anytime. Keep the excitement level high and eliminate the darker realities of human emotions from the service.
- Sow the idea that going to church whenever it is open is the same as being the church.
- Never be afraid to use fear or guilt as a motivator for beneficial results. You must realize that these are the greatest causes for seeing almost immediately the effects you want.
- Blame sin for the reason why people don't advance in the church. This creates the idea that perfection is what produces promotion.
- Use incentives such as fund-raisers, pledge campaigns, bake-sales, auctions... anything that will fondle money out of people who normally wouldn't let go of it so easily.
- Brand and market yourself and your church as wealthy, successful and positive, then play the part yourself. This will create the ethos of prosperity and success that attracts money.
Maybe you have some suggestions of your own?
The fine art photograph is the creation of my friend Mark Hemmings
and is from his mannequin series.