Distractions in worship are like that lone mosquito that wakes me up at 3 am. I forget about the good rest I’ve had to that point and think of that one pesky insect.
Distractions are like the few bits of gristle I found in my dinner a few nights ago – ruined the rest of the chimichanga; I found myself on guard instead of anticipating my next bite. As a result, I didn’t finish it.
I have near-zero tolerance for distractions in worship. I’ll go to great lengths to ensure that when we meet with God on Sunday morning, HE is the only thing on our minds. That’s why we work so hard to get rid of musical mistakes, make sure the technology doesn’t draw attention to itself. That’s why it’s critical that we have a well-staffed nursery. Sunday morning is your “date” with God and we want it to be the best hour of your week.
We’re working on two more potential distractions in coming weeks. One, we’ll be upgrading the platform/stage lighting so people don’t have to wonder “Are the lights supposed to be on during this? Should I get up and take care of them? I can’t see the video as well as I’d like. I wonder what’s wrong?” We’ll take care of the light levels at the front of the sanctuary from the tech booth so our people can think about content, not lights or timing. We’ll add a bit of color while we’re at it, but the primary goal is to eliminate distractions and help people focus on God, not what should have been done twenty or thirty seconds ago.
The solution to the second isn’t as easy, though it’s free. It’s important that our people know what’s going on with our church family so we’re equipped to connect, grow and serve together. It’s a never-ending challenge, however, to keep those “horizontal” things from stealing our attention in worship. Stopping for announcements in the middle of the service yanks our attention away from God and we have to start over afterwards. It’s a lot like this cute little clip from the movie “UP” youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6EkCdK6bUls
Beginning in November we’re pushing the announcements to the very beginning or the very end of our time together. I’m looking forward to the difference this will make for our people. They love God – deeply. These improvements should heighten their ability to worship even better. We have a very important appointment with God at 10:30 on Sunday mornings and we want nothing getting in the way – nothing at all.