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Learn more about my journey in church and marketing.
Have you ever wondered... What if Starbucks marketed like the church?
The book that started a movement; get your copy of ChurchMarketing 101.
BEYOND RELEVANCE MUSINGS ON CHURCH, STRATEGY, AND CULTURE

BY RICHARD REISING

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Nov 11

The Video: The purpose of the video.

Nov 11
Nov 11

It is important, rather critical, that as church leaders we see how the things we do can affect others. I love the church. My heart beats for pastors and church leaders who have given up normal lives for salaries that are below expectations and responsibilities that are above reason. I have spoke, written and pounded the table at every turn for the last 10+ years as an advocate for that pastor who wants to see peoples' lives changed for the cause of Christ. This video is a furtherance of that cause.

Many years ago I spoke at a conference, challenging on biblical marketing principles (yes, they exist--more to come on that) and I shared the concept that most churches should not promote themselves. Why? Simply this. If your current membership is not actively inviting people (or visitors are not staying), there are reasons why. If you send out a big promotion and visitors come, all they see are the reasons why your congregants do not want to invite people. Those visitors seldom return and share with their friends the reasons they will not come back. Lights came on in minds throughout the room.

I further challenged that every person who has had a life-changing experience with Christ wants every one they know to have a life-changing experience with Christ. If they are not inviting people to church, it is likely because they are not confident in the result. I know some of you will say, "we as believers are responsible to win people to Christ outside the church and the duty of the church is equipping...", I know and I get it. The challenge is, that until that is realized, people from outside our church walls are visiting looking for answers. These people are not spiritually minded, they are naturally minded. Like 1 Samuel 16:7 tells us, they do not see our hearts when they enter, because "man looks on the outside."

After the conference I had the opportunity to speak to a number of pastors. One particular couple mentioned how much they liked the message and saw its application in the church they came from but not in their own. In the church they pastored, they had great members who loved them and were proud of their church, but still never invited anyone. After a few minutes of questioning, they had unknowingly built a case for how awkward a visitor would feel. Their core group was so core, any visitor would feel like an outsider looking in--not invited to the party.

For years I have struggled with this topic. It is my heart that every church looks introspectively about how a visitor feels when they walk through their doors. This can be extremely difficult for the visitors who are not regular church-goers. They are terrified. They feel out of place. They need us to acclimate them. I have secretly visited hundreds of churches in my consulting. I see things first hand. I have trained my mind to see things from the eyes of the visitor, yet maintain my own unrelenting passion for the church. And it is for this reason I have a desire for us as church leaders to all meet people right where they are at--just as Christ met us.

Every church has the opportunity to better themselves and be introspective, so I don't want you to think your church is excluded from this. Your takeaway is not to determine which church this fits the best, it is to go back to your church and ask, "God, how can we connect with the lost more effectively so we can share your love with them with greater success?" Yes, we need the Spirit of God. We need His presence and His wisdom. We can have it all and still confound a newbie by not creating a bridge from his/her cluelessness (this day and age we have to expect them to know nothing) into the depth of terminology, style and churchi-ness we have grown comfortable with.

With all the love I can muster, this video was not meant to offend, to make fun, or to frustrate. It was meant to wake us up. To open our eyes by seeing something in a new light. To help our hearts break. The response is not to point, to blame, nor to think "our church is in the clear." The point is to prayerfully ask God how we can remove the speed-bumps we have unknowingly created for visitors. It is to convert our speed-bumps into onramps toward the knowledge of Christ. If your heart has been stirred, please read more of the blog, read the book, and stay connected with us. We are here to help churches reach more for the cause of Christ. We will continue this cause as long as He allows.

Lord, in our pursuit of you, let us not go blind... to the lost.

© Richard L. Reising

6 comments

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scott b

loved the video, and i think you're right on.

Posted on Tue, Nov 11, 2008 @ 11:37 AM CST

melissa

I think this video is hilarious and does make the church look silly in the way it "markets" itself!

But, I do want to be careful in comparing the church to a for-profit business. We're already struggling with our current congregations having such "consumer" attitudes when it comes to church. Comparing the church to Starbucks seems to reinforce this mindset and is completely opposite of what we're trying to achieve - a gathering of Christ followers truly engaged in their communities and world to share the love and hope of Jesus.

Posted on Tue, Nov 11, 2008 @ 12:45 PM CST

Jeff Jenkins

Great job on the video. I loved the seminar you did @ Gateway in 07. I still think about the relevance you brought to the story of Solomon's reputation of excellence with the Queen.

Glad you started blogging. Your ministry has had a great impact on many. Keep it up!

Posted on Tue, Nov 11, 2008 @ 4:34 PM CST

joey

Wow... Amazing. Loved it. Absolutely food for thought as well as an introspective look at why we do what we do in church? Everything must have a reason or it shouldn't be done.

Posted on Tue, Nov 11, 2008 @ 4:42 PM CST

Mike O'Connor

What a disturbingly helpful and very funny clip. I look forward to more of your work and checking your stuff out more.

Java allelujah!! Hilarious

Posted on Wed, Nov 12, 2008 @ 8:10 PM CST

Pastor J

Thanks for the video, it really helps the church to look from the eyes of a visitor. We to often forget how unconfortable is was to walk into a new church, not knowing anyone.

Posted on Thu, Nov 13, 2008 @ 9:46 AM CST

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