Last year a gym opened in my small town. That may not seem like a big deal to you, but when you live in a town where there’s nothing to do and more businesses close than open each year, it’s pretty significant.
Now, this gym isn’t one of those fancy gyms that come to larger towns, but it is nice. It was mostly funded by a local Christian doctor and donations through various Christians and churches, who thought our town needed something for young people to do other than driving around town, drinking, and doing drugs.
I honestly never thought it would work. Small businesses rarely succeed in my town, and how many people in a town of 2,000 are going to join and stick with it? My guess was not many.
And my guess was wrong.
Lots and lots of people signed up, including some of my friends, including my pastor, and including my wife.
The first year has been a huge success to the point that they’re even talking about adding on to the gym.
But I’ve never stepped foot inside the gym.
I’ve been encouraged to join. People have told me it’s great. Multiple people, including my wife and best friend, have personally invited me, yet I don’t go.
Is it because I don’t need the exercise? Far from it. I need it now more than I ever have in my life.
Is it because I don’t have the time? No, I could definitely make the time.
Is it because I don’t have anyone to go with? Nope, I have plenty of people who would love for me to go with them.
So, what is it?
I think it’s the realization that it’s going to be difficult, especially if I really want to see change. And right now, I’m content with my health.
Why am I telling you this?
Because I believe there’s a part of your community that feels the exact same way about attending church.
They’ve heard great things about it. They have friends who go there. They know it would change their life if they really committed themselves.
One day maybe they’ll go, but right now they’re pretty content with their life. They’re not ready to change.
And that’s the dilemma we’re facing as pastors. How do you get people to show up to church who are pretty content with their life and don’t really see a need for it?
In many ways, the answer to that question is the same answer as, how do you get people to show up to the gym.
We’ll take a look at those similarities in my next post. To make sure you don’t miss out on that post or any this year, take two seconds and subscribe to the blog to get tips on church growth, leadership, and more delivered to your inbox each week.