Me. To our new worship leader. In a conversation where I was questioning him about what we’re going to do to “step it up a notch” this year.
And, as soon as the words left my mouth, I regretted them.
Because I had just caught myself doing the exact thing that I’m going to spend the rest of this post encouraging YOU not to do.
Which is this: don’t make Easter Sunday… this singular day… this high holiday that gets the “all-hands-on-deck” approach in our churches (right along with Christmas Eve and Mother’s Day*)… don’t make it somehow more important than any other day.
Don’t do it.
Don’t be like me.
Don’t make Easter a big deal.
Because…a belief in Jesus’ resurrection impacts every single moment of every single minute of every single day of our lives. Click To Tweet
Not. Just. Easter.
Now, before you roll your eyes as dramatically as the stone was rolled away from the tomb (#EasterHumor) ask yourself these Easter Sunday questions:
- Will someone in your church make sure the volunteer greeters are “the nicer ones” on Easter Sunday? (some of you know what I’m talking about)
- Will the speakers in your service use different verbiage to be thoughtful of those who don’t attend church regularly?
- Will there be special communication pieces that get passed out or more intentionality around which announcements get highlighted?
- Will your pastor’s message be more passionate, more “seeker-friendly”, more salvific, or more or less any characteristic, when compared to other weeks?
- Will there be extra follow-up or invitations extended after Easter Sunday that go above and beyond what’s typically done to connect with guests?
If you answered “yes” to any of the above… the next question is: Why? Why is there an extra special effort made to do something really over-the-top on this one Sunday – instead of EVERY week aiming to be thoughtful of who’s walking through our doors?
To get all those “guaranteed” people to come back, right? So that they might meet Jesus and come to know and believe He is who He says He is and is worth trusting and following with their whole life? THAT’S why we have the nice greeters on Easter, right?
I raise these questions because I suspect I’m not alone in being completely guilty of making Easter a big deal and losing sight of the fact that…EVERY time the church gathers, it’s a big deal. Click To Tweet
EVERY time 30 or 300 or 3,000 people wake up on a Sunday and drive to the same location and commit to spending at least an hour or two of their time with other humans in collective recognition of the ONE human who lived and died and rose again over 2,000 years ago – that that’s worth celebrating! THAT’S worth inviting everyone we know to Every. Week.
Not. Just. Easter.
At Ministry Architects, we love Easter. We also love the other 51 Sundays of the year – and every day in between. And we want churches to be equipped to do what they’re called to. It’s why we ask questions like…
- Why aren’t the nice greeters the ones who greet people ALL the time?
(practical application question: Does your church have a consistent way of helping a person discern their gifts then inviting them to the best-fit places they can serve?)
- Why isn’t there heightened intentionality with communication every Sunday?
(practical application question: Does your church have a known vision, long-range goals, and core values that all opportunities must align with?)
- Why do we seem to care more about the guests on Easter than we do about new, rare, or infrequent attendees the other 51 Sundays a year?
(practical application question: Does your church have a consistent process for connecting with people that impacts their return?)
The Shepherd left the 99 to go find the 1 who was lost. And I just wonder…
…when we all work so hard to bring our A-games to Easter Sunday, couldn’t one understanding of this parable be that even when just 1 new person shows up on a random, non-Easter Sunday, they get to…
- interact with a body of people who have a Spirit about them that’s palpable from the parking lot to the pulpit?
- experience a whole orchestra, resounding throughout a sanctuary, down the halls, and all the way out the doors?
- be connected with and known with a fierce intentionality by all those around?
All because…Jesus is alive and worthy of such praise and purposeful living every single day. Click To Tweet
Not just on Easter.
It shouldn’t be that Easter Sunday is when it’s most acceptable to be head-over-heels, giddy with excitement about the core truth of our faith. It should be all the time! So I challenge you:Don’t tuck away your beliefs and your boldness and your best efforts along with your bonnets and bowties and baskets until next year. Click To Tweet
Pinpoint those things your church does “special” for Easter– and start incorporating them into your every week approach of discipling and reaching others now!
And if you need some help? Just give your favorite Ministry Architect a call.
*Results from a Lifeway study conducted in 2011, surveying 1,000 protestant pastors
**Bonus article that reveals how many minutes it takes to make a peep! And other facts that could be good for your next youth group Easter trivia game.