3 Ways to Help Outsiders Feel Welcome in Your Church

The Gospel Coalition | 12/6/2018 | Staff
gbabii05 (Posted by) Level 3
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Honestly, this shouldn’t be so hard.

But for a good majority of “unchurched” or “outsiders” coming through our church doors, we often make it real hard. Their status as “clearly not insiders” is glaring from the moment they’re greeted by either an overly enthusiastic team of awkward cheerleaders inviting them into the happiest place on earth, or a holy huddle of scary-eyed rabbits praying they don’t have to make eye contact with the newbies.

Reason - Journey - Unbeliever - Church

The reason I begin here is because it’s where the journey often begins for the unbeliever coming to your church.

So what can we do to help outsiders feel like welcome, without turning church into a preference-driven smorgasbord of gospel-lite hors d’oeuvres? In other words, how do we make the gospel comprehensible to those who’ve had little or no relationship to it? My suggestion is simply this: We use gospel hospitality to extend an invitation to gospel reality.

Comfort - Curse - Word - Church - Thought

Comfort doesn’t have to be a seven-letter curse word in the church. The first thought that likely enters the mind of a person when they enter a church is Am I going to feel comfortable here? It’s a good question. Here are two simple ways we can show gospel hospitality in the church.

Be friendly. Most outsiders are going to have little problem with Christians who are genuinely warm and kind to them. It’s tragic how many churches struggle in this area. I’ve come to realize that friendliness actually needs to be taught.

I’ve come to realize that friendliness actually needs to be taught.

At our church, we have a deaconess of hospitality named Jillian, who teaches our people how to be friendly. Friendliness should never be assumed. Church members need to know that showing Christ’s love begins by taking a genuine, hospitable interest in the people God brings to us.


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