Tips and Church

Last week my family and I went to Anchorage for a short vacation during Spring Break. During our stay there we had the opportunity to go out to eat a few times at some nicer restaurants. We had been saving up a couple of gift cards since Christmas and we are members of some birthday clubs and we had coupons for Hunter’s birthday. Anyway, my lessons on being frugal are for another post. The point of me telling you this fact about my life is because in every case we had a waiter or waitress help with our meal. Michelle and I both noticed over the course of three days how our service got worse and worse and worse. It was interesting to me because in each case the wait staff, I am sure, was expecting a tip. Now let me say this, I am a good tipper. With good service I have been known to give amounts of 20-30% or more. I once tipped over 40% of my (large) bill because the service was exceptional and it was my birthday. Unfortunately on my last meal of the trip I did not even give 10%. This is not because I am tight or cheap, but rather because I believe a tip needs to be earned. So these ladies and gentlemen had a paying, generous customer in their store and they did not take advantage of it for their benefit.
The reason I mention all of this is because I have been thinking about how it relates to Church. How many Sundays have we had guests visit us who are interested in the Lord and His Church and we didn’t take advantage of it? So here are my tips on making an impact at Church:

1. Speak to people you do not know at Church meetings.
– Introduce yourself and ask their name.
The tendency is to speak to people we know and like.
2. Ask questions about our guests?
– Ask their name? What they do for a living? Etc.
3. Show them to the Nursery area / Children’s areas if they need it, or at least direct them to someone who knows about these areas!
4. Introduce them to someone in the Church you know.
5. Invite them to sit with you if they would like.
6. Explain to them how things normally work in the worship program if you have time.
– Use the program to share info and upcoming events.
7. Sing and worship the Lord and say a prayer for the guest.
8. Talk to them after the program
– Don’t just ask them what they thought of us, show interest in them and their family.
9. If everything seems to be going well, invite them to lunch with you
– And tell them you are paying (and then pay!)
10. If they decline lunch be sure and invite them back next week.

Obviously you can go overboard with friendliness. If our guest seems reserved, do not push the interaction. You might be pushing them away. On the other hand, most of us want – desperately want – people to be nice to us. Now as you can imagine they will not leave you a tip, but you may affect their lives for eternity.

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