When I think back to some of the factors that have helped Saddleback grow through the years, one of the most important has also been one of the most overlooked.
If you want people to show up, you must be nice to people.
Sounds simple, right? It really shouldn’t surprise anyone. But even though most churches say they’re friendly, some of them really just mean their members are friendly to people they already know. They’re friendly to people who look like them and act like them.
And that doesn’t guarantee they’re friendly to guests.
You must be intentional in your friendliness. You don’t overcome unfriendliness by accident. You need to build friendliness into your worship service.
That’s why, early on at Saddleback, I instituted the three-minute rule. Guests are usually among the first to leave at the end of a worship service. Longtime members stay the longest. I’d tell my longtime members to find someone who looks like a guest (they are usually easy to spot) and talk with the person right after the service. I’d encourage them to spend some time getting to know these guests and making…Continue Reading