What Attracts People Looking for a New Church?

14618169207_7874f47497_bToday’s guest post comes to us from Lauren Markoe for Religion News Service. Read on to discover insights on what attracts people to new houses of worship.

Top-notch preaching most attracts people looking for a new place to pray.

That’s the conclusion of a new Pew Research Center study, released Tuesday (Aug. 23), which asked 5,000 people about their search for a new church or other house of worship.

“This is what people value in a congregation — a good message, a good homily that resonates with them and gives them guidance,” said Greg Smith, Pew’s associate director for religion research.

More than 4 in 5 people (83 percent) put preaching at the top of their checklist. Preaching was followed by clergy and lay leaders who make them feel welcome (79 percent) and an appealing style of service (74 percent).

And for those pastors, imams and rabbis who are wondering how a snazzy website factors into potential congregants’ searches, the survey reveals that in-person encounters carry much more weight.

“This may be because some of the factors people say they value the most in choosing a congregation — the quality of sermons, the style of services and a welcoming leadership — are difficult to assess over the phone or on a website,” the researchers concluded.

Why do people look for a new house of worship?

The most common reason given (34 percent) is because a congregant has moved. Far less frequently did respondents cite a theological reason or dissatisfaction with the house of worship they used to attend, or the clergy who led it.

About half of those searching for a new congregation (48 percent) considered switching denominations. But for two groups in particular — Catholics and members of historically black churches — switching is uncommon, with only a third reporting such a change as a consideration.

“When searching for a new congregation, Americans value quality of sermons and feeling welcomed.”

Click here to read the entire article.

Your partner in ministry,

Nelson

Posted On: August 30, 2016
Posted as: Ministry
0 Comments

George Whitefield on How to Live

 

images

“O live and spend your time now, as you will wish to have done, when you come to die.”
- George Whitefield

Posted On: August 27, 2016
Posted as: Misc
0 Comments

Monday is for Follow-up: Encouraging Membership with Service Opportunities

“Serving is more important to the spiritual growth of your people than to the success of your service. As your volunteers serve you and the church, you are serving them by providing them with an outlet to take on responsibility and become more deeply connected. Given this truth, one of the best ways to encourage membership is to multiply your service opportunities. Provide your regular attenders with more ways to serve more often. Never let a lack of opportunity stand in the way of someone who wants to serve. – Nelson Searcy

(the above quote is from p. 137 of Fusion by Nelson Searcy)

What will you be doing today to maximize service opportunities for your regular attenders?

Assimilation-Seminar-collageThere IS a proven process to welcome first-time guests, get them to return again and again, and effectively move them to membership and an ongoing relationship with Christ.

10 years in the making, it’s completely updated and expanded to be 30% longer with 50% more content – the latest learnings and strategies that have worked in my church and at over 3,000 churches across all sizes and denominations.

Multiple package options available to fit your budget – Click here to choose from Download, CD or DVD! Plus save up to 90% with Early Release bonuses – Hurry, opportunity ends soon!

Posted On: August 22, 2016
Posted as: Assimilation
0 Comments

Hiring Pastor of Worship Arts at The Journey Church Boca

medium_d9bbe37c9db09e8ed044We’re looking for just the right “A” player to fill a key pastoral position here at The Journey Church in Boca Raton, FL.

We’re looking for a Pastor of Worship Arts to join our team – Don’t apply unless you love reaching the unchurched, leading a healthy and growing ministry (not just songs onstage) and have read Nelson Searcy and Jason Hatley’s books “Engage” and “Revolve”!

However, if you’re passionate about reaching the lost are willing to devote yourself to “giving the people of South Florida the best opportunity to become fully developing followers of Jesus,” you may be just the right fit!

Here’s the official position description:

Pastor of Worship Arts @ The Journey Church in Boca Raton:

The Journey is a contemporary 12-year old church with campuses in New York City, Queens, NY and Boca Raton, FL.

Evangelism and Worship are the heart of our church. Over the last 14 years we have seen thousands of people make decisions to follow Christ in our church and over 2,000 people baptized.

The position of full-time Pastor of Worship Arts is currently available at our newest location in Boca Raton.

The Journey – Boca Raton began weekly services in February 2011, and since then has seen over 300 people baptized and averages 300 people in attendance each week.

The position of Pastor of Worship Arts is full-time and reports directly to Lead Pastor Jason Hatley, while working in harmony with the other pastors of the Boca Raton staff.

This pastor position would give leadership to our established and growing Worship Arts Team (music, technical, stage, and creative), give leadership to the creative and design elements of our worship services, be responsible for music selection and worship order design, and serve as a member of the executive leadership team. Salary and benefits are competitive and the position is available immediately (although we’re patient in order to find the right person).

This is a great opportunity for someone to join a great and growing team in a beautiful, although highly unchurched, part of the country.

So, are you called to serve in South Florida?

Are you passionate about raising up musicians and volunteer leaders, and leading a proven music and worship planning system? Can you help lead and grow our worship services and our church to the next level?

Are you interested in expanding an already healthy volunteer structure of over 30 volunteers to over 60 volunteers?

Can you lead worship at a very high level, and bring musical excellence to the stage, to worship planning, and to the highly experienced musicians who serve on our Worship Arts Team?

Are you interested in helping a growing church continue to grow?

Do you have a high view of ‘serving as part of discipleship’ and do you have a strong desire to reach unchurched families?

This is not a pastoral care position, but an equipping position to make a difference with the best and the brightest from around the world that make up the Journey Church in Boca Raton, FL.

Responsibilities:

  • Leadership, growth and innovation of The Journey’s Worship Planning System.
  • Hands-on direction for our Worship Arts Team and Worship Services. Not just “the song leader” – the overall service leader!
  • Requires the ability to lead teams effectively and to raise up new leaders at a rapid rate.
  • Organizational and administrative skills are an absolute must.
  • The ability to teach and contribute to The Journey’s teaching team as well as the ability to work well with and lead staff.
  • Must be extremely hard-working and have had leadership experience on a large or growing church staff.

Other desired characteristics include strong interpersonal skills; growing leader; team builder; sense of humor; risk-taker (seminary not required).

JOB REQUIREMENTS:

  • A Solid Calling to serve as a supporting pastor
  • The ability to manage a large and growing Music Team System
  • A passion for the Bible and innovation
  • A high level understanding of music and music direction in a contemporary / rock context
  • Ability to lead worship while playing guitar necessary
  • Ability to read and write music notation and Nashville Number charts a must
  • Bachelor or Masters Degree or ‘ministry experience’ equivalent in music and worship leading
  • A positive attitude
  • A team player
  • A familiarity with The Purpose Driven Church Model
  • A passion for worship and the arts
  • A passion and drive for evangelism and reaching the unchurched
  • A high commitment to the local church
  • Comfortable in a non-Charismatic worship environment
  • Experience in a church of 500 or more is a bonus
  • Must be willing to work up to 60 hours a week when necessary

Only resumes accompanied with a COVER LETTER will be considered.

The cover letter should be personalized for this position and should answer 4 questions:

(1) Why you are interested in this position?

(2) Have you read the books ““Engage: A Guide to Creating Life-Transforming Worship Services ” and “Connect: How to Double Your Number of Volunteers” by Nelson Searcy and Jason Hatley?

(3) Why you would feel comfortable relocating to South Florida?

(4) And what about you makes you stand out from other candidates for this position?

*Please include recent video/audio of you leading worship at a worship service (large or small) – please include that along with your resume and cover letter.

Please send cover letters and resumes to jason@journeymetro.com.

Sorry, but contacting the church in other ways shows that you can’t follow instructions and thus you won’t be considered – ha (but true!).

Posted On: August 19, 2016
Posted as: Misc
0 Comments

ALMOST GONE! $1 Book – Your Guide to Creative Worship Services

Engage-book-web-button-400x400

Today through tomorrow only, I’d like to offer you my proven book, Engage: A Guide to Creating Life-Transforming Worship Services, for just $1.00. This book will show you how to increase the effectiveness of EVERY aspect of your Sunday worship services.

Along with Journey Worship Arts Pastor Jason Hatley, and Jennifer Dykes Henson, I wrote Engage to be your step-by-step, stress-free guide to planning creative worship services that allow for true life change. Comprehensive in scope, Engage provides teaching pastors, worship leaders, and volunteers with the tools you need to work together to develop and implement a worship planning system that improves communication,enhances creativity, and honors Jesus every week.

And today through tomorrow, Friday, Aug. 19th, I’d like to give you this proven book for just $1.00!

This is not an e-book! You get the actual book for just $1.00 – Shipping Included!

This book will teach you new words and phrases, such as preaching calendar, worship planning, creative planning meeting, message run-through, and the Thursday midnight rule. You’ll discover:

– How to plan life-changing services each week

– How to ask the right questions before starting to plan

– How to break out of the cycle of stressful week-to-week planning

– How to utilize creative elements effectively

– How to bridge the common gaps between pastors and worship pastors

– How to develop a worship philosophy that both staff and volunteers can support

– How to evaluate and improve worship services each week

– How to plan months in advance for maximum impact

– How to (and why to!) develop a preaching calendar

– How to use the seasons of the year to maximize effectiveness

– How to create a culture of feedback based on common goals

Click Here to Grab Your Own Edition Now for Just $1 (Shipping Included)! Hurry – Only a Few Copies Left for Senior Pastors in the U.S. and Canada!

Worshiping God should never be stressful or business-as-usual. If you’re ready for a positive change in your worship planning, it’s time to Engage. Experience the full measure of what God wants to do in our churches each and every Sunday!

Your partner in ministry,

Nelson

P.S. – I’m so so passionate about the message in this book that not only will you get the book for $1.00 but you will also get a FREE TWO MONTH MEMBERSHIP to my Renegade Pastors Network.

Hurry – This Opportunity Expires Tomorrow – or Once Copies Run Out! 

Limited to Senior Pastors in the US and Canada Only.

Posted On: August 18, 2016
Posted as: Worship Planning
0 Comments

Church Growth Principles from the Apostle Paul

imgresToday’s guest blog comes to us from Charles Stone for Stonewell Ministries. Dr. Stone is an engineer, author, and founder of Stonewell Ministries, an organization that seeks to help pastors leverage their leadership for greater Kingdom impact.

When I was in seminary Church Growth 101 was a required course. I took interest in the whole field and became a student of church growth. I read a pile of books and attended most of the big church growth conferences. Some of the principles I’ve applied have worked. And some have failed royally. When we look at the early church, though, obviously they did something right. They grew exponentially. In this post I suggest 5 church growth essentials from the Apostle Paul that we see from his first missionary journey.

Principle 1: Rely on the Holy Spirit.

In these two chapters we see the obvious work of the Holy Spirit. Ultimately, while not dismissing good leadership, thorough strategic planning, and great outreach events, only God by His Spirit grows the church (Col. 2.19, 1 Cor. 3.7). In chapter 13 we see the work of the Holy Spirit in several ways.

  1. He was involved in the selection of Paul and Barnabas to go on this missionary journey (13.2).
  2. He planted in their hearts the desire to go (13.4).
  3. He gave Paul great courage to confront a wizard who wasn’t too happy that Paul was evangelizing his boss (13.6-12)

So, if you want to see your church grow, make sure the Holy Spirit is guiding and directing your plans and decisions.

Principle 2: Evangelize through your most natural relationships.

When Paul would enter a city, he would make a beeline to the synagogue. Why? Because he was a Jew and Jews would be there. Their common Jewishness bound them together. It was also natural for him to go there first, because the Jews were already religiously minded and Paul could easily talk about what was common between them, the Old Testament scriptures, prophecy, and the longed for Messiah.

Some of the most fruitful ways to grow the church is to find those most open to the gospel, often those already in our circle of relationships.

Click here for the full article and to read the remaining three principles.

Your partner in ministry,

Nelson

Posted On: August 17, 2016
Posted as: Church Growth
0 Comments

$1 Book – Your Guide to Creative Worship Services!

Engage-book-web-button-400x400No matter how great Sunday’s worship service was, there’s always another Sunday service just around the corner, waiting to be planned — a reality that forces most pastors and church leaders into a continual state of stress. Can you relate?

Along with Journey Worship Arts Pastor Jason Hatley, and Jennifer Dykes Henson, I wrote Engage to be your step-by-step, stress-free guide to planning creative worship services that allow for true life change. Comprehensive in scope, Engage provides teaching pastors, worship leaders, and volunteers with the tools you need to work together to develop and implement a worship planning system that improves communication, enhances creativity, and honors Jesus every week.

And today I’d like to give you this proven book for just $1.00!

This is not an e-book! You get the actual book for just $1.00 – Shipping Included!

This book will teach you new words and phrases, such as preaching calendar, worship planning, creative planning meeting, message run-through, and the Thursday midnight rule. You’ll discover:

– How to plan life-changing services each week

– How to ask the right questions before starting to plan

– How to break out of the cycle of stressful week-to-week planning

– How to utilize creative elements effectively

– How to bridge the common gaps between pastors and worship pastors

– How to develop a worship philosophy that both staff and volunteers can support

– How to evaluate and improve worship services each week

– How to plan months in advance for maximum impact

– How to (and why to!) develop a preaching calendar

– How to use the seasons of the year to maximize effectiveness

– How to create a culture of feedback based on common goals

Click Here to Grab Your Own Edition Now for Just $1 (Shipping Included)! Hurry – Limited Copies – Only Available to next 98 Senior Pastors in the U.S. and Canada!

Worshiping God should never be stressful or business-as-usual. If you’re ready for a positive change in your worship planning, it’s time to Engage. Experience the full measure of what God wants to do in our churches each and every Sunday!

Your partner in ministry,

Nelson

P.S. – I’m so so passionate about the message in this book that not only will you get the book for $1.00 but you will also get a FREE TWO MONTH MEMBERSHIP to my Renegade Pastors Network.

Hurry – This Opportunity Expires Today – or Once Copies Run Out! 

Limited to Senior Pastors in the US and Canada Only.

Posted On: August 16, 2016
Posted as: Worship Planning
0 Comments

Monday is for Follow-up: Creating Relationships

“It doesn’t matter how well you preach or how passionate your worship team is – if your newcomers do not find relationships and take on responsibility within the church, they will not stay long. – Nelson Searcy

(the above quote is from p. 134 of Fusion by Nelson Searcy)

What will you be doing today to maximize relationships and responsibilities for your newcomers?

Assimilation-Seminar-collageThere IS a proven process to welcome first-time guests, get them to return again and again, and effectively move them to membership and an ongoing relationship with Christ.

10 years in the making, it’s completely updated and expanded to be 30% longer with 50% more content – the latest learnings and strategies that have worked in my church and at over 3,000 churches across all sizes and denominations.

Multiple package options available to fit your budget – Click here to choose from Download, CD or DVD! Plus save up to 90% with Early Release bonuses – Hurry, opportunity ends soon!

Posted On: August 15, 2016
Posted as: Assimilation
0 Comments

John Newton on Preaching

imgres

“My grand point in preaching is to break the hard heart and to heal the broken one.”
- John Newton, clergyman and author of the hymn “Amazing Grace”

Posted On: August 13, 2016
Posted as: Preaching
0 Comments

Ways to Respond in Times of Crisis

Today’s guest post comes to us from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.

PrayingWe’re all human. So it makes sense that our hearts often hurt for people impacted by tragedies here and abroad—tragedies that can leave us feeling helpless.

What can we do in response to the violence and destruction around us?

  1. Pray Deeply

“Prayer is the Christian’s greatest weapon.” —Billy Graham

As believers, we look up. We seek out God through prayer—and trust in His sovereignty.

Scripture tells us prayer is one of our most powerful resources. But how can you pray more deeply?

When you don’t have any words, or when you feel like you’re beating down God’s door with the same prayer day after day, ask God’s Holy Spirit to help you. The Bible tells us the Holy Spirit is an intercessor for us and cries out to God on our behalf.

  1. Immerse Yourself in God’s Word

When you feel as if your very soul hurts from news reports of another shooting, evil act or disaster, how do you find comfort?

There is a place of refuge. The Bible tells us, “Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him” (Proverbs 30:5).

  1. Guard Your Heart

“Grief can kill a person emotionally and physically. If not counteracted with God’s strength and power, our personal weakness may debilitate us.” —Billy Graham

Do our minds ever erase graphic images such as horrifying footage from tragic events?

You may have experienced what’s called secondary trauma from viewing video clips and photos on TV and social media. It’s important to recognize how these lasting impressions can affect you, as they can be physically, emotionally and spiritually damaging.

Click here to read the full article and to read more ways to respond in troubled times.

Pastor-In-Personal-Crisis-895x1024Your partner in ministry,

Nelson

P.S. Pastors are not immune from crisis and often find it challenging to manage personal crisis while leading the church. My friend and fellow teaching pastor Kerrick Thomas knows this all too well. In his new resource, The Pastor in Personal Crisis, you’ll hear his story and discover some practical steps on how to overcome the inevitable trials while still serving and thriving in ministry!

Click here to learn more about this powerful new resource.

Posted On: August 12, 2016
Posted as: MiscStress Management
0 Comments

More Free Stuff...

Receive Nelson Searcy's FREE "Healthy Systems, Healthy Church" E-book ($23.95 value)!

Just complete the form below and you will receive your free copy:

First Name:
Last Name:
Email:
Title:

God designed all the parts of the body - both the church body and the physical body - to work together, Healthy Systems, Healthy Churchallowing us to fulfill God's purposes and plans on this earth. And both of those respective bodies function best through well-developed systems.

Nelson Searcy's revised Healthy Systems, Healthy Church E-Book has been updated to include diagnostic questions for you to determine the current health of your church's systems and practical help as you lead your church to greater health and effectiveness. Just complete the form above to receive your FREE copy!


Search The Blog

Looking for a particular subject? Please enter the keywords in below and press the search button to find what you are looking for...


Blog Categories


Blog Archives


Nelson’s Books

LaunchFundarFusionFusion

IgniteThe Generosity LadderMaximizeRevolve

EngageConnectThe Greatness PrincipleThe Renegade Pastor

Sign Up Here!

Nelson Searcy

Dear Pastor,

Sign Up to Receive My FREE Monthly E-Newsletter, Podcasts, Training Updates and Other Resources!

Hide For Now

Don't Show Again

ERROR: 8 - CURL error: couldn't connect to host