Back in 2010 my family and I moved to Nashville so that I could take a new ministry position. We placed our home for sale in the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex, and it took almost 10 months before we got our first offer. Our house was on a cul-de-sac, close to the high school, and in a nice neighborhood.
Our realtor surprised us with his assessment of our home: it was too cluttered! He urged us to put some furniture in storage and declutter the house. Declutter?! My wife was none to happy with him for calling her house “cluttered.” It was really off-putting.
But when we really got honest with ourselves, we agreed the house needed to be de-cluttered. We’d grown so used to seeing the house full of “stuff,” it just didn’t register to us any more. We’d grown blind to the true condition of our house.
The same can be true of Sunday School rooms on a church campus. We overlook the coffee stain in the carpet. Our rooms have mismatched chairs. Things are stacked over in the corner of the room. The paint on the door post is chipped. The room needs a new coat of paint. And then there is that crushed velvet picture of Jesus and the Last Supper that someone donated years ago. Rest assured that your first-time guests see all of these things. You’ve grown accustomed to them, but they stick out like a sore thumb to potential group members.
The next time you are on your church campus, take note of the following:
- Is there a sign on your classroom door that clearly tells guests what group meets in your classroom?
- Do all the chairs in your room match?
- Does your marker board need a good, thorough cleaning?
- Are there any stains in your carpet? How about runs in the carpet?
- Are all of your light fixtures working?
Try and see your meeting space through the eyes of a guest – and then take action. What do you need to address quickly? What are your guests seeing when they come to your classroom?