We are so thrilled to have Logan Wolf as a guest blogger today sharing how his church utilizes "small big days" to build relationships. Logan is the lead pastor of CrossPoint Church, a multisite ministry with campuses in Provo and Taylorsville, Utah.
A few Sundays ago at each of our campuses, families stayed long after the service was over. Children chased each other around the property as adults gathered in groups for conversation. Some of them have been attending our church for years; others joined us for the very first time, though you wouldn’t know it by the way they were engaged in what was happening. You could hear laughter and smell the charcoal grill. May is National BBQ Month and May 28 is National Hamburger Day. We were celebrating it at church.
Easter and Christmas aren't your only options
There are only three big days on our church calendar: Easter, the church’s anniversary, and Christmas Eve. Like many churches, these are days where we can count on a packed house and dozens of first time guests. We know we’ll break attendance records on these days. Though that is always exciting, it is discouraging to watch those numbers dip, sometimes dramatically, in the weeks following. Nearly four months separate each of these big days. We were finding it difficult not only to carry the momentum and excitement, but were struggling to keep new families engaged long enough to develop meaningful relationships. Because our faith is to be experienced in relationship, not only with God but each other, this was a problem.
Enter "Small Big Days"
One of the solutions we found to this obstacle is “small big days.” These days are big in the sense that we promote them both within our church and the community. They are small in that they focus on lesser-known holidays or piggyback on more obscure national days of awareness. National Hamburger Day simple provided an opportunity not only for fellowship within our church but also a low-pressure event to which our members could invite their friends, neighbors, and co-workers.
Do a simple Google search: “unknown holidays,” “national awareness days,” or “fun days to celebrate.” You’ll find lighthearted days, as well as more serious ones. With a little planning—and minimal investment—they can be utilized to create community and develop relationships, as well as drive outreach and advance mission.
For example, June is Aquarium Month. We’ll use this as an excuse to take a group to our local aquarium for a day out together. August 30 is National Trail Mix Day, on which we’ll not only make trail mix but organize a short, family-friendly hike, inviting those within our church as well as families that don’t yet attend.
January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. This was a great opportunity to engage our community. We screened two movies at our campuses that dealt with this horrific issue, promoted the events heavily outside of our church, and then sold concessions with the proceeds going to Operation Underground Railroad, an organization that works to free children from sex slavery. This example brings up another great way small days help to build relationships. You can use them not only to engage your church and the community, but other organizations. We’ll do this again during October 8 and 14, National Fire Prevention Week. Not only will we take nine-volt batteries door to door, introducing our church, and reminding people to check their smoke detectors, but we’ll have the American Red Cross come to our services to talk about fire safety with our children.
“Small big days” are an excellent tool for building relationships within a church, with the community, and with other organizations. And what's great is that there are a seemingly endless number of such days to take advantage of!
Logan Wolf is the lead pastor of CrossPoint Church, a multisite ministry with campuses in Provo and Taylorsville, Utah. He graduated from Southeastern Free Will Baptist College in 2008 with a bachelor's degree in pastoral theology and practical ministry and from Baptist College of America in 2013 with a master's degree in theology. He is currently enrolled in Bethany Divinity College and Seminary where he is pursuing a doctorate in philosophy with an emphasis in religion. He's a happy client of BELAY.