An Outsider’s Perspective

If someone came and observed you at your workplace today, what kind of reviews would you receive? Would they tell you you interact well with co-workers and provide excellent customer service? Or would they catch you on an off day when you’re tired from a busy workweek?

Imagine someone making surprise visits to your place of worship. Matt Rosine has been hitting up churches all over Houston and blogging about it. It’s interesting to see how they measure up. If you attend church every week, it’s easy to get caught up in your own world and not realize how you can positively or negatively affect someone’s experience. Read some of Matt’s newer posts at the Chronicle, including his take on mega churches and how they may be killing Christianity.

Other points he makes: Does a church practice what it preaches? How does the experience match up to expectations one might have from reading the church Web site? How’s the music? The sanctuary layout? Are your five senses engaged?

My friend Kasey recommended a book called Jim and Casper Go To Church. Pastor Jim Henderson and atheist Matt Casper visit and comment on churches nationwide together, mega and not-so-mega churches like Lakewood, Saddleback, Imago Dei and The Bridge.

Also, you’ll want to read David Zimmerman’s take on churches in his 9-part series at the Church Marketing Sucks blog. He reveals what first-time church visitors really care about, and it’s not the sermon or music. What makes people feel uncomfortable in church and what makes them want to come back?

Whether you regularly attend church or not, what have your church experiences been like?

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