Saturday, July 28, 2007

Worship Questionnaire - Part IV

Question #4: Listed below are a number of words that can describe the worship experience. Select the words that best indicate your understanding of a desired worship experience (choose all that apply):

Spiritual - 94%
Biblical - 69%
Emotional - 55%
Intimate - 53%
Celebrative - 53%
Humorous - 50%
Spontaneous - 46%
Casual - 34%
Practical - 30%
Reverent - 28%
Creative - 25%
Serious - 19%
Innovative - 12%
Solemn - 3%
Formal - 0%
Predictable - 0%
Liturgical - 0%

No surprises here!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Worship Questionnaire - Part III

Question #3: Do you believe that it would be better to continue having multiple services in our current facility or to bring everyone together in one larger service in another location?

Multiple Services - 60%
One Service - 29%
No Response Indicated - 11%

Our people clearly love the convenience of multiple services--I do as well! The thing that I do not like about multiple services is the way that it divides our church. We also lose the momentum of the larger unified service. The "No Response" response was not an option on the questionnaire but seemed significant enough to report.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Worship Questionnaire - Part II

Question #2: At present we have two worship services on Sunday morning--8:00am and 11:00am. In the past we have also held services on Sunday morning at 9:30am and on Saturday evening at 6:00pm. Please indicate your preferred worship time (choose only one):

Sun, 8:00am - 32.6%
Sun, 9:30am - 32.6%
Sun, 11:00am - 32.6%
Sat, 6:00pm - 02.2%

Three Sunday services win the day with Saturday being an "also ran". We definitely like the convenience of multiple Sunday morning services at Cornerstone.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Worship Questionnaire - Part 1

We recently asked for feedback on our worship services at Cornerstone through a simple questionnaire. I want to take the next few posts and share a summary of the questionnarie along with my thoughts on what it might mean if anything. To begin with, let me share that we had a very small response to the questionnaire. It was passed out individually to every person in attendance at both of our worship services with the instruction to place the completed questionnarie in the foyer on the way out after the service. The questionnaire was one page with eleven questions. Out of 232 worshippers, only 44 questionnaries were actually turned back in. That's only a 19% participation. So, the most significant question is perhaps the one that we didn't ask--"Why would only 19% bother to answer the questions?" My possible responses to that question would be: #1--I'm pretty happy with worship as it is and I don't want to go to the trouble of answering questions. #2--I needed more time to pray about my responses than what you provided. #3--I forgot to turn it in. Regardless of the reason, here is what 19% of our worshippers thought our worship service on July 1st. I do not believe that the response is large enough to draw any firm conclusions regarding our worship at Cornerstone except for the obvious conclusion that we do not like to fill out questionnaries.

Question #1: At present we do not provide a printed order of service. Do you consider a printed order to be (choose only one).

  • Essential - 2%
  • Important - 16%
  • Helpful - 25%
  • Unneccessary 57%

There doesn't appear to be a large outcry demanding a printed order of service in the worship folder each week. I'm a little surprised that some would view it as essential. What do you thinnk?

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Light in the Darkness...

Allow me to share some inspiring quotes from a post written by Rick Thompson as his blog today:

By contrast to the cold dead religiosity of churches that now exist only as monuments, there is a church rising in the land of Promise.In the past 20 days, I have watched as an Arab Pastor boldly laid hands on and prayed for the healing of a committed Muslim and Islamic teacher who allowed him to pray in the name of Christ.I have observed as a former Muslim who is now a passionate believer in Christ excitedly tell all who will listen what it means to leave the darkness of Islam and to follow the teachings of Jesus.I watched as an Arab Christian teenager share the gospel to a room full of Muslim scholars in a country where it is strictly forbidden.I have watched as one of our missionaries wept over the condition of an abused Bedouin woman who has suffered such humility in a culture she cannot escape.I have prayed for and with missionaries who have given their lives to serve in one of the most difficult places on earth where spiritual darkness is deep and abiding, and yet their light shines bright and joyful.I have worshipped with Arab believers who could not understand English as I could not understand their language, and yet, in worship, we were in agreement and unity over our praise of Christ.I have laughed and joyfully walked with people from half way around the world I have never met before, but because we had Christ in common, felt the incredible bond of fellowship and Christian community.

Rick's post can be read in it's entirety at his blog The Road We Travel.

Friday, July 06, 2007

On Turning 15...

Tomorrow, on July 7th, 2007, my oldest son will turn 15. Our house is noisy with several of his good friends who are spending the night and eating my food. Jaren was born in the 7th year of my marriage on the 7th day of the 7th month. I have always felt that God was communicating grace and blessing through such a symbolic birth. We named him, "Jaren", which according to some baby book somewhere long ago discarded means, "to sing". Jaren's mom (my wife) absolutely loves music and is a gifted singer/songwriter. Music has been a big part of both of our families of origin and so the name seemed appropriate. Unfortunately (at least at this point), Jaren is not real big on singing. He is however an awesome guitarist as the picture illustrates. He can play "Jesus Freak" with the best of them, though my personal favorite is his version of the "King of the Hill" theme. Jaren has been blessed to be a native Texan by birth (Amarillo), which helps to give him a positive outlook on life. (You don't have to be born in Texas to be useful to God--but it doesn't hurt!) Jaren spent a week in Juarez, Mexico recently seeing how much of the rest of the world lives and sharing a bit of what Jesus has put in his heart. I am very encouraged to get reports of Jaren's involvement in Bible studies at church. He is a smart kid with many intelligent ideas (like his dad). Jaren recently taught a Bible study on "Bald Men of the Bible". We love to watch the Discovery Channel, the History Channel, and selected cartoons. Jaren's an awesome cook as well. I gave him my pack of "Southwestern Chili Mix" from the Southwestern Seminary Alumni Luncheon in San Antonio and he turned it into an amazing meal. I wouldn't be surprised if Jaren became a chef one day. He is a great cook! He has a gentle and peaceable heart. Jaren can quickly grow emotional when he sees someone hurting. I don't mean to imply that he is not capable of showing his age--he does often! I just mean that I see Jesus in his eyes a whole lot of the time. Tomorrow, my oldest son turns 15 and I couldn't be prouder! This is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased!

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Liar! Liar!

Recent studies show that human beings begin deceptive practices at a very young age. The Psychology Department at the University of Portsmouth report that children begin lying as early as six months. According to the researchers, "Fake crying is one of the earliest forms of deception to emerge, and infants use it to get attention even though nothing is wrong. You can tell, as they will then pause while they wait to hear if their mother is responding, before crying again."

It appears that the Bible has gotten it right once again. David declares to God in Psalm 51:5, "For I was born a sinner—yes, from the moment my mother conceived me."

Read the entire article in the Telegraph here.