Our church is doing a baby dedication in a pigpen. How absurd, you say. You’re right, it is absurd. We are actually doing extra cleaning, special decorations and are going above and beyond for the special day. Why? Because children are a heritage of the Lord and special to Him, but also we know that the environment of the dedication sets the tone for the actions. Let me repeat that. Environment sets tone. If we expect parents to raise their kids in a healthy way, we must emphasize and provide a healthy place (local church). Here are two things I know about a healthy environment.
- A healthy environment is a prepared environment. Nothing shows you care more than being fully prepared for an event. This is probably seen even better when we look at it with the opposite approach. What if your dentist’s office was filthy, the tools they use were unwashed and the workers were untrained? You would be looking for an new dentist, wouldn’t you? No matter how much truth we have or how urgent our message, we had better preface it all with ample forethought. Cleanliness, organization, clutter removal and good decorations will help carry your passionate Bible message much further.
- A healthy environment is a caring environment. Care giving needs to run deep and wide in any successful organization. When you’re doing business in your community, you are more likely to return over and over if there are caring people throughout the organization. On a recent trip to a car dealership for a warranty issue, I was met by caring sales people who directed me to the service department. I met a courteous service manager who explained the process of the repairs. Upon completion of the job, the mechanic gave me some further explanations and directed me to an equally pleasing cashier. The entire experience set the “tone” for my good referrals and return business.
Tone doesn’t trump truth, but it sure does enhance it receptivity. Our baby dedication service was a great success. As should be every service in every local church. We only have 52 Sundays in a year. Each one of them could and should be treated as a fresh starting point for spiritual growth. Do not surrender your Sundays to routine and efficiency. (See Efficient Teachers are Ineffective) Make each one special and over flowing with obvious preparation and caring well trained personnel. Get that Bible message ready, but make sure is being presented in an environment that enhances rather that detracts from the Truth.
What is one little thing that you have done to help set the right tone in your ministry?
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