Here fishy, fishy, fishy

Church leaders love to see their people excited about bringing new people to church, and they really want people in the community to be interested in their churches. Our churches are keenly aware and concerned about this. We knock on doors, send out mailers, have big events for Easter, Fall, and Christmas time. We add giant flashes LED signs. We create Facebook pages and try to get people to share our content with there friends. However, there is one thing that I think trumps all the other things if we get it wrong.

Today I was thinking about this, and one thing occurred to me that I thought was worth sharing. Can you imagine going fishing and baiting the hook with something you'd like to eat rather than the fish you are hoping to catch? Something tells me that the results might not be as good as you hope for. One of the things about reaching people in our backyard is figuring out what people in the backyard like and offering that. I can guarantee that people are 100% interested in what they like. I can't guarantee the same about what you want.

All of your communication to "fish" should be baited with things that "fish" are interested in. You can't go around promoting fishing hooks and fishing gear if we expect to catch fish. There is nothing wrong with promoting things that you want, but you need to consider the platform you are communicating on and who you are trying to reach. Are you reaching people within the organization? Use internal language and meet the desires of your people. Are you reaching people who aren't in the church? Use common language and meet the desires of people who aren't in church. After you have baited your fish, you can set the hook. After the hook is set, you can take the fish with you wherever "you want" to go.

Never try to set the hook until you first get a nibble.

- Pastor Nate Cress

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