I talk to people a lot about their expectations for church. When people learn that I am a pastor, they generally want to tell me about their current church or the church where they used to be members. They talk about the things that they like and the things that they don’t.
People want to feel as if they are welcome and that they can fit in.
People want their kids to have a good experience.
People want to feel as if they are receiving “good teaching” (the actual definition of this varies from person to person).
People want to feel that they are encountering something that is both authentic and of a certain quality level.
People want the music to be good (the definition of this also varies from person to person).
But something people almost never say that they want their church to be fun.
Maybe it’s because this doesn’t seem like a necessary priority or because people feel like this is a petty or shallow thing to want from a church. Or maybe it’s simply because people don’t naturally associate church with fun (I certainly didn’t for a long time).
But that’s exactly what I want out of a church: I want it to be fun.
I want people to come to church and laugh, make jokes, and be a little silly every once in a while.
Last Sunday at Collective Church, I told a story during my sermon that involved me wearing 3D glasses. So I thought it would be fun to give everybody a pair of cheap 3D glasses. As I continued my sermon—even after I finished my story—people started putting on their 3D glasses, trying to make me laugh while I preached. At the end of the service, we took a group photo of everyone wearing the glasses (above).
It didn’t have much of what many people would call “spiritual value,” but people were sitting in church, and they were having fun.
That’s what I want every week.
Do I hope people enjoy the sermons, the music, the kids ministry? Do I hope people feel some amount of spiritual enrichment from spending an hour or two with us every week? Of course.
But I also hope people are having fun.