Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Attractional Model vs. Transformational Model

There are lots of different models and approaches to getting people to come to your church. Personally, I have witnessed and observed the attractional model getting the most attention...or at least more of my attention over the years. Basically, this is...put on the best show in town and people will come. Flashing lights, great sound, concert quality worship, polished transitions, eloquent communicators, slick marketing, perfectly timed execution of media, etc. Just put on a flashy show for the glory of God and you will pack the place out.

Look, I am not about to slam these things. I will be the first guy to tell you that whatever we do, we need to do with excellence! Plan well, speak well, sing well, bring all your best for the Lord. However, I have been thinking through something recently. It was kinda lodged in me during a session at Willow a few weeks ago led by Willow's Young Adult Pastor (who was about my age).

So, here it is. I hope it makes sense:
  • People can't be impressed anymore, so stop trying. If they want a good concert, they will buy a ticket to one and head to the local stadium. If they want a good show, they will TiVo it and watch it. If they want to watch ANYTHING under the sun, they will just YouTube it. They do not need to come to church to see it. We need to get out of the business of impressing people. Not sure we were ever called to that.
  • Instead, we should offer people what they need that they cannot get on YouTube or Google....authentic relationships and life transformation by the power of the Living God! Not gonna find that just laying around anywhere. Instead of the attractional model, the church ought to adopt the transformational model attempting to lure people in with the power of life change through authentic and transformational realtionships with God and people.
That's my heart for CCF! May God help us to protect against the temptation to show off and compel us to spend our days and passion on creating space for transformation to happen.

What do you think? Join the conversation. Help me shape these thoughts.


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