Andy Stanley, pastor of North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, GA, explains how their church creates an environment that is both deep for the believers, and yet relevant (wide) to unbelievers. A critical question for Stanley in North Points planning process is, “Who is the church for?” If it is for believers only, then a church is created in a very different way that if the church is going for the “unbelieving market.” If a church is understandable and relevant to unbelievers, the whole experience from the parking lot to the auditorium must be intentionally designed with someone with little church experience in mind.
That isn’t to say that North Point’s only goal is to get people into the building. They want people to come back and personally grow in Christ. Stanley identifies five faith catalysts that God uses to strengthen our faith. Church leaders should be on the lookout to implement these catalysts throughout the whole church organization. The five catalysts are:
- Practical Teaching
- Private Disciplines
- Personal Ministry
- Providential Relationships
- Pivotal Circumstances
Deep and Wide is a seminar for church leaders to rethink the vision of the church, its programs, its facilities the content and order of worship and even the sermons. Leaders from small and large churches in any staff responsibility will gain ideas and insights from this book. I thought that the chapters on designing a worship service was so helpful that I bought a copy of the book for each of our worship team members. I highly recommend the book.