One of my greatest memories as a kid was going to Walt Disney World in Florida. Every year, my mom would load us up in the car, and we would drive down to Florida to this magical place.
While Disney was magical for me, it wasn’t for my mom. When I became a parent myself, I learned that Disney could be very overwhelming for adults. I mean, think about it for a minute, this magical kingdom sits on 27,000 acres, and as a parent, you need to cover that with your kids or grandkids in several days.
The anxiety starts as you walk into the park and have to immediately figure out where to go while your kids are yelling, “Let’s go here!”, “Can I buy this?” and “Come on, let’s go!” Then, you remember that you got a map when you came in to guide you to where you and your kids need to go. The map gives you an expectation of what is there and how to get where you need to go.
What does this have to do with your Sunday morning announcements?
Well, it’s our job to guide our guests and give them some expectations of where we are taking them for their Sunday Morning Experience.
Here are 3 Things to think about during your church announcements that will help you and your guests.
1. Welcome your Guests
It’s easy to get right to business and forget to welcome our guests. I make sure to welcome guests who come every week and those who are 1st-time and 2nd-time guests. Taking the time to let people know you’re glad that they came shows you care.
2. Guide your Guests
Remember, you are the map; you are the tour guide. We forget that 1st and 2nd-time guests have no idea what to expect, which causes anxiety. So free them from that by giving them some expectations. Here are the things they are thinking:
- How long?
- What’s next?
- What do I do?
I like to say something like,” We have a great service planned for you! For the next 60 minutes, we are going to sing some songs, and then our Lead Pastor will be out with a message of hope and encouragement.”
I answered the first two questions right there, and then I’ll answer the third by asking them to do something. I ask them to follow along with the message notes to get the most out of that day’s message and then ask them to fill out the connect card to let me know how I can pray for them and give me some feedback on their experience.
I have found that if I give them an expectation, it will prepare them for transformation!
3. Challenge your Guests
We do a “Welcome” at the top of the service at our church and then a “Wrap” after the message.
The “Wrap” is the most important part of the service. Use it to challenge your guests to take “Next Steps.”
Did you commit your life to Jesus? Let me know on your Connect Card.
Are you ready to follow Jesus and get baptized? Sign up on your Connect Card.
Jesus calls us to serve and not be served; have you found your place to serve yet? If not, sign up today and be like Jesus!
Giving your people a clear call to action is discipleship, and we should do it every week!
These are some of the things we do at Oak Ridge. I hope they inspire you to think about what they can look like for you. If you do it, it will change them, but it will also help you lead a church of people who are growing to be like Jesus, which will change their families, communities, and the world!
Written by Pastor Bryan Lloyd. Originally posted on The DREAM Church Conference