Most of the world seems to be on Facebook. I’ll be somewhere really remote, drawing people following a church service, and as I hand the finished product to the (ahem) victim, will say, “Now, this is your new Facebook picture.”
No one has ever said, “I’m not on Facebook” or especially “What’s that?” Usually they say, “Good idea” or “You’ve got it!”
Now, I recognize that being a Southern Baptist preacher, most of my FB friends are like-minded with me about the Lord and church and the Bible–you know, spiritual things. It’s the nature of these things. So, on a Saturday night or Sunday morning, the “posts” from many of my buddies all seem to say similar things….
–”Join us for church at Shiloh this morning at 9:30 am. You’ll receive a blessing.”
–”Today I’m preaching on Hezekiah’s tunnel. We’ll see if we can find the light at the end of that thing.”
–”My little granddaughter is singing today at Cornerstone. You won’t get good stuff like this on American Idol.”
–”Have you ever wondered what happened to the Jebusites? Be at Riverside Church this morning and find out.”
These are great folks, they want to reach people, and I wish them well. However, they desperately need to sharpen their posts if they would increase the effectiveness of these invitations to church.
Most of the invitations are boring or trite or too general or uninspiring.
I don’t have the last word on this subject, but here are five suggestions that come to mind….
One: Tell us which church you’re talking about and how to get there.
I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve read posts like this: “Today, First Baptist Church will feature a visiting choir from (wherever). They have won all kinds of awards and we are so excited to have them. Come early for a good seat.”
Arrgghh!! What church, friend? And where is it?
One of my pastor friends would say, “Come out and be with us tomorrow at First Baptist Church of Houston.” A time or two, I messaged him privately to remind him that hundreds of people reading this do not know he’s talking about Houston, Georgia, and that there are a few other cities by that name. (I don’t even know if there is a Houston, Georgia. Just making a point.)
Sometimes they will say, “Located on Route 6 at the intersection of (whatever).” Again, not enough information! What town, people?