Sunday I was able to blow a church guest’s mind. I love doing that! I don’t do it as often as I’d like. I’ve had a few memorable swings and misses. But when I connect and blow someone’s mind, it validates the time and energy I put into the whole endeavor.
What’s the profoundly simple way to blow a church guest’s mind? Call them by name the second time you see them. People expect to be ignored when they go to a church for the first time. They’re new. No one knows them. No one should talk to them. They’re pleasantly surprised when you go and introduce themselves. They give you a first name, talk pleasantries for a minute, and then you move on to the next guest.
But if you pay attention, if you write their name down, email yourself, check them out on social media to get to know them, do whatever it takes to remember their name the next time they come back, you’ll blow their mind. Easter I met a couple with two kids. Nice family, talked pleasantries for a few moments and then moved onto the next guests. It was a little easier to remember this family because they had a connection with a family who already comes regularly.That week I went on Facebook and found them, worked on names and faces, and waited. Three weeks later the couple showed up for the second time. It honestly took a few seconds to register who they were, but by the time they walked past me (they weren’t planning on talking to me because they assumed I didn’t know them) I was able to call out to the husband by name. (Full disclosure: I forgot the wife’s name and had to ask her again).
I could tell the husband was visibly stunned that I knew his name and said something to that effect. In that moment he didn’t feel like a stranger or an anonymous face in the crowd. He felt like a person worthwhile enough for the pastor to learn his name. It was the first step in them beginning to feel like family at Mt Vernon. They’re planning on coming back again, and hopefully they’ll become a part of our family.
I miss more guests than I get, but I learn all the names that I can. It’s a profoundly simple way to blow their minds.