I would agree. Churches do live in the real world and should take all necessary precautions when it comes to how they deal with children.
"8. The bulletins/programs are too crowded. It looks like the Cheesecake Factory menu. What on earth am I supposed to choose to pay attention to? This is a key first impression piece for a new person. It should welcome them, tell them what to expect and provide key info on kids ministry. Unfortunately, many churches view it as the way to keep all the insiders informed." -- Tony Morgan
Attacking the Cheesecake Factory? Heretic. Seriously it seems as if he is running out of serious points because this is getting pretty petty. Notice the division the purpose driven mindset operates under. There are those everything should be geared towards and then -- the insiders! Those vile people who already belong to the church who for some silly reason think they still matter! They literally do not according to the Purpose Driven Church. Rick Warren recommends that pastors encourage dissenters to leave the sheepfold! He calls it "blessed subtraction." You see as long as you replace the one sheep with two goats, you are ok because it is about numbers of bodies in the pew, not the number of souls saved.
"9. Too many specific, insider-focused announcements instead of a few church-wide announcements. I would add that many churches waste announcement time telling me about all the logistics of what their people could be doing instead of leveraging that time to communicate the "why" behind the activity. They use the time to say, "Small groups will start next week, at 7 pm, in room 202, which is up the steps and down the hall." What would be more meaningful? Share a personal story about your small group and then challenge people who aren't connected to get in one. And really, just stop announcing so many things all together. Point people to your website." -- Tony Morgan
Yeah! Cause everyone has a computer and is skilled at navigating the Internet, right? The bottom line here is that someone cannot sit still for three minutes while announcements are being made then they can leave. That may sound harsh but remember; when you do not operate under the purpose driven model, you have not begged anyone to come to your church. They are there because they either want to or need to. They will survive three minutes of announcements. The church belongs to the insiders beloved. If you are in a church that says otherwise and keeps trying to trick the unsaved to come in, you need to run as fast as possible. Realize that all of what we have reviewed shows that the purpose driven model focuses the church on the goats that might be visiting instead of the sheep that belong to Christ. The opposite presented is the notion of the insiders but that misses the mark. A true church does not focus on the insiders but rather on Christ and His Gospel. This will in turn feed the sheep and potentially save the goats. You don't have to point people to your website, stop handing out bulletins, or even stop making announcements. Just preach the Gospel and let God Give the increase.
"10. The feel of the church--the interior design--feels like nothing else I experience outside the church. It's brown. There are bulletin boards, plastic flowers in the restrooms, churchy banners that mean nothing to an outsider, and sometimes worn out carpet, furniture, and funky smells. The church members and staff have been nose-blind to it all for years, but a new person who steps through your front door will instantly notice all of it. Your first thought reading that list might be that having an outsider attend your service and point all of these things out would be discouraging. Oddly enough, the opposite tends to be true. This experience is one of our clients' favorite phases of the whole planning process. Why? Because as I said at the beginning, once you SEE what an outsider SEES, you can't UNSEE it. If you want to reach new people, start trying to see yourself the way they see you. And, start looking at them the way Jesus looks at them: with a willingness to leave the 99 for the one." -- Tony Morgan
Can you spot the surreal biblical disconnect? The 99 and the 1 were all sheep. They were not goats. Jesus looks upon the unsaved as He does much of the church today -- they are sheep without a shepherd. The shepherd has been replaced by a ruthless CEO who takes strategy advice from Tony Morgan and thinks those who need to grow in Christ are "insiders." Beloved, this is serious business because this is how the vast majority of churches are run today. Instead of a gospel-centric approach it is a goat-centric approach. Instead of a pastor you get a huckster in the form of Monte Hall who wants to make a deal with you. This is a transactional event now. You show up most Sundays, tithe me 10% of your income and service in a ministry and I promise you can have eternal life and sin without repentance. That's the product the purpose driven church is selling. That is how so many will get to this point:
On that day many will say to me, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?' And then will I declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.' -- Matthew 7: 22-23 (ESV)