One of the great privileges of my position as Regional President is that I get to travel to different churches and watch as they create moments of inspiration and reflection in their weekend services where the gospel is presented, God's Word is central and people are changed by its proclamation. God's people have been gathering together for centuries and have been witnesses to the changes in the culture all around them, and the church has seen its own set of changes in everything from styles of seating, attire, music, and architecture to the methods of communication, preaching and leadership. However, one thing has not changed - the central importance of gathering with other believers (the ecclesia-gathered ones) to worship God and be informed by His Word. And for me, one thing has become very apparent as I worship with various congregations across our district:
A healthy, growing church works hard to create moments where people can come face to face with their creator, hear from His Word and be inspired to make some kind of change.
When that happens, people don't sleep in or stay away. They prioritize Sunday morning in their calendars, and they invite their friends.
So what is it that makes a worship service inspiring?
How do we create an environment which both invites God to pour out His presence AND engages the audience to participate and respond to the God who wants to change their ordinary life into one of extraordinary purpose?
Natural Church Development has done extensive research on worship services and has identified 4 major commonalities in all healthy, growing churches with regards to inspiring worship services. While every church might include different elements in their services, the following four themes are present time and time again in these growing churches:
Anticipation for worship
Personal transformation in worship
Relevant messages rooted in God's Word
As pastors, we have to take a hard look and ask ourselves these questions:
Do our services make people want to come back?
Are they looking forward to the next time the body can gather?
Is our corporate worship an extension of what is already happening in our people privately?
Are they making changes in their daily lives based on their experience on Sunday morning?
Are they comfortable bringing their non-churched friend, family member or co-worker?
I have devoted my life to helping the local church because I believe it is the hope of the world, but I also know the hour you get on Sunday morning may be the only chance you get to communicate that hope to your people. I believe it is worth our best effort to not waste one minute of the precious 60-75 minutes we have with people. The life-changing message of the gospel is worth it!
Ken Nabi, Regional President
Ken Nabi has served as the Regional President for Converge Great Lakes since 2016. He earned a Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and worked as a Marriage and Family Therapist before enjoying 21 years as a pastor at Community Church of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Ken is a strategic leader focusing on movements and reproducible systems. Community Church of Fond du Lac planted five churches during his tenure, and those churches helped plant seven more churches.