Monday, December 15, 2008
Who Are You Attracting/Excluding
I always really get into the worship music at my church, but, yesterday I was caught up in an uncontrollable rejoice during this time. A guest visit by the University of Central Oklahoma's Ebony Gospel Choir rocked my world, and my church.
It was great to see this predominantly white group of people crying out to God to the worship styling of a different culture. As I looked around I saw more minorities in the crowd than usually attend this church. My wife, noticing the same thing, commented on how nice it was to have a more diverse crowd this weekend. We also discussed how though many of the visitors had church homes and were here to support friends or family who were performing, surely there were some visitors with no church home at all. How can we attract those mentioned with no church homes for future visits and to join our church family. It's strange how we can grow up in the same town, play on the same teams, go to the same schools, and worship the same God and exclude other races and cultures while we do it.
This experience made me really have to start thinking. Why is it that there are so few minorities in my church? I seriously doubt that someone decided to exclude minorities in our church. As I pondered this, I was reminded of a phenomenon described by John C. Maxwell in his book The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership. The Law of Magnetism as described in this book states that "like attracts like" or that people attract others like themselves. Our church is great at reaching 20-40 year old white couples with young children. This is true primarily because that's the original group that started the church. They attracted others like them, and so begins the snowball effect.
The Law of Magnetism is evident all around us in society today and mostly in our churches.
Chances are that whatever organization you're leading (it's not just churches), there are people being missed by your business or ministry.
So, if this just happens naturally by the Law of Magnetism, how do we combat it? We use this very same phenomenon to our advantage. Maybe for you it's as simple as including a more diverse variety of music on the play list coming over the speakers of your business. For some of you it may be offering different styles or slogans to the apparel you sell. For our church, maybe it's adding a little more "soul" to our worship experience or more visits from that UCO Ebony Gospel Choir.
The point is that if the mission of your organization is to reach as many people as possible, you've got to ask what things you can do to become more "like" the people you've been missing.