Why You Don't Want (just) a Friendly Church
It’s counterintuitive, isn’t it? Who wouldn’t want to attend a friendly church? But Danny Franks asserts that maybe it’s time for our churches to “get over being friendly.”
What Franks has observed when speaking at churches is that the vast majority of churches are quite friendly…but only to each other. To the people they’ve become close with and consider part of their church family. Those who have made their home in a particular church are greeted warmly with handshakes and hugs, but those who are newcomers, desperately seeking what Jesus can offer…well, sometimes they aren’t given a second glance and never return.
This is why guest ministries are so important—because a culture of friendliness among members isn’t quite enough. We don’t want to miss even one opportunity of a life transformed by Jesus.
Franks correctly observes “there’s a huge difference between friendly and intentional…
You see, I’m friendly to the people I know. But it takes intentionality to be friendly to the people I don’t yet know.
Friendly is a conversation with a long-time friend. Intentional is reaching out to the new person that just walked through the door.
Friendly assumes that someone is going to take care of the stranger in the auditorium. Intentional will always act rather than assume.
Friendly will smile at a first time guest, intentional takes the initiative to cross the room and talk to them.
Friendly hopes that “everyone is a greeter,” intentional makes a plan to keep people from falling through the cracks.
Friendly will make someone believe you’re glad they showed up. Intentional makes them believe you want them to come back.
Friendly thinks about it. Intentional does it.”
How is it at your church? Are you a culture of friendly, or do you have a guest ministry with intention? Is it time to make some changes?
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