How to Close the Deal
by Unappreciated Pastor*
It’s no secret that much of church “growth” isn’t kingdom growth at all. New church members often join a church because they have either moved to a new town or are frustrated with the church they are currently in. As pastors we are aware of this. Most pastors don’t seem to mind the fish swapping aquaria. In fact many pastors just want to see the sanctuary full on Sunday mornings. And if we are not careful, we can resemble a sleazy new car salesman more than a pastor. So that’s the subject of this blog. Let’s call it “How to Close the Deal.”
Good morning sir! What a lovely family you have there. Who’s this, your daughter? Oh, pardon me I had no idea she was your wife, she looks so young. (At this point feel free to slap him on the back and laugh).
Step right on into our show room, I mean sanctuary. We want your stay with us to be as comfortable as possible. We have:
Free coffee mugs
You just make yourselves at home. But let’s get down to serious business now. What do I have to do to get you into this church? Let’s not beat around the bush, we both know that’s why you’re here. Fill this card out if you don’t mind. Here’s a pen with our church name on it. Now I want you to relax. Joining a church is a big deal. I know that you probably have some reservations, but I am here to set your heart at ease.
Mom, I bet those kids keep you busy. What with all the school work and keeping up the house, oh, and you work, too? My stars, how do you ever have time for yourself? Mom, I’m going to help you. How would you like to have two hours every Wednesday evening to do what you want to do? Here’s what you do. You bring those two darling kids up here at 6 PM. We will feed them, play games with them and teach them a lesson. You show back up at 8 PM and they’ll be fed and ready for bed. Now doesn’t that sound like something you’d like?
You’re just visiting? That’s ok. But why waste anymore of your time? You don’t want to drag those children from church-to-church. Studies show that children who have parents that move from church to church have a greater chance of becoming serial killers. You wouldn’t want that would you? Of course not. We both know that you are going to pick a church in this area, so why not this one?
You’re not ready? Oh, I understand. You are still trying to decide if Christianity is for you. I respect that. Becoming a Christian is a life changing decision. You know what else is a life changing decision? Getting in your car, pulling out of the parking lot and getting hit by a semi. So, it really is an easy question. Do you want to die without Christ in front of our church, or would you like to join our church?
Oh, I see, you need to know if your kids are going to enjoy it here. Hey kids, let me ask you a question. Would you like to sit really still and listen to a long sermon or play on your iPod? Because guess what, we have free Wi-Fi. And we are very strict when it comes to our youth minister. We don’t let any of them stay after their 25th birthday.
What’s our worship style like? We have three different services. We have traditional, for those who like the classic hymns. We have contemporary for those that like to jam. And we have a blended service for folks who don’t like either one. So I’m sure you’ll find a service that suits you.
Now, what I need you to do is walk right down that aisle. When you get to the stage, stop, and shake that man’s hand. Fill the card out that he gives you and get ready for more handshakes and hugs than you’ve ever experienced. Welcome home…uh…..what was your name again?