This past Sunday at Church of the Suncoast I announced we will be going to one summer service at 10:30am still at Rushe Middle. Let me give you some insight into what went into this decision.
First of all we have been seeing some really cool things happen over the past few weeks. 3 people have accepted Jesus which makes 11 SINCE Easter!!! That is why we do church! We baptized 3 adults and dedicated one kid two weeks ago. We have some new people serving. AND, we have had 34 first time guests since Easter without any advertising, just invites and word of mouth!
So some go God stuff has been going on! But, our overall numbers have just not been there. So here is what went into the one service decision...
First, every time the numbers dip I freak out, can I be that honest? You tell yourself not too, but I am human! I looked back over last years numbers from this same span of time from Easter until now and we are running the same on Sunday's... BUT, even though this is just the trend of how our attendance goes there is more to it than that. God has been really doing something inside me and I felt it would be disobedient to not go to one for at least this summer. Can't explain it other than to say I want to be obedient as best I know how.
Second, we want our main service to be a safe place for guests to come and feel at ease. The summer is hit or miss crowd wise so with the two services on a low Sunday it was not a safe environment! Kind of like walking into a restaurant when only 5 people are there, makes you wonder right? Have everyone in one service will make even the low weeks of the summer feel safe for a guest we want to treat like a VIP.
Third, summer provides a natural time to do this, it just fits the rhythm of life.
Fourth, since we went to two services in the spring of 2009 we proved we could do it and that was cool. About 1/2 the time we have needed two and the other 1/2 we could have done with one. I like two, BUT again this is about making out guests feel safe, NOT ABOUT US.
Finally, it gives us a chance to rest up our volunteers over the summer. The school said we could not leave anything set up, like in past summers, so we will be doing set up and tear down all summer long. With a 10:30 service we can let our set up peeps come in as late as 8am!!! Dang :-)
A bonus in all this is we can do some fun stuff after the service like a 4th of July celebration (which IS GOING TO BE STINKIN' AWESOME!!!)
If you are a regular at the Suncoast what we need from you is to invite like crazy this summer! You guys are the only marketing we have right now :-) You ARE what makes this place go! You are God's hands and feet and voice. Let's make this summer one we never forget and blow the doors off the place.
I hope you guys heard my heart on Sunday and if you have any questions shoot me an e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
See you Sunday @ 10:30am!!! Who ya bringing??? Hopefully your dad for Father's Day... hint, hint!