The hard truth that many churches don’t want to acknowledge is that having a big crowd on Easter means very little if people are not transformed and impacted in a way that results in God’s kingdom being larger and the church you are a part of growing in the weeks and months following Easter. Sharing Jesus’ grace and hope is just the first step in our role as a church. We are also responsible for the ongoing care and growth of those God entrusts us with on Easter.
With that in mind, here are 3 questions I recommend you ask yourself:
- Do we have an easy way for someone who has questions or wants to come back to give us their information?
Do you use a connection card of some type? Are you clearly asking them to fill it out? Are you explaining why they should fill out? With a bigger crowd than normal, is there room at the Guest Services area for them to bring it and is it clearly marked and staffed by knowledgeable volunteers? As an example, on a huge day like Easter where we will have thousands of guests walk through our doors at Next Level Church, one thing we do intentionally is emphasize that the Connect Card can be dropped into the offering buckets or filled out digitally on a smartphone. This helps to stop the crowds at our Guest Services area from being an excuse for someone not to drop it off.
- Do we have an immediate, simple, and non-invasive plan for following up with people who do give us their information?
Getting someone’s information is meaningless if we either neglect to use it or use it in a way that turns them away from God’s church rather than toward it. You are tired. You want to take a break after Easter. But we don’t at NLC. Why? Because we want people to be followed up with quickly and effectively. So, we still do all of our normal follow-up within the same timeframes as we do every other week after Easter. (If you want to hear about our normal process, our Lead Pastor did a podcast episode that walks through what we do HERE).
- Are we doing something so different on Easter from our normal weekend that someone who comes back will feel like it was bait-and-switch?
One of our most common phrases at NLC is that “every weekend is the Super Bowl”. We believe every weekend is just as important as the last. Every weekend in our 8 year history, someone has met Jesus. Every weekend, NLCers are entrusting us to share the gospel in a relevant way by inviting their friends or family members. If you create a huge Easter focused on the gospel, bring a rock band, shoot off fireworks, and rent elephants to parade around, but the next weekend you have an organ and a bell choir, people are being deceived. Neither a rock concert or traditional music are wrong ways of reaching people, but people crave authenticity. Be who you are. Just because it is Easter doesn’t mean it’s time to suddenly pull out all the stops in a way you don't normally do so. Be true to who God has called you to be and you will reach those God has called you to reach. If you feel a need to change it up for Easter, there is a good chance that what you actually are feeling is a need to change what you do every week.
I pray that you reach many with the love of Jesus this Easter!