As a pastor, I have several churches that I want to attend, but because of my personal church obligations, it becomes difficult to travel to these churches. One of the churches that I have wanted to attend is Elevation Church in Charlotte, NC. Actually, this church has been near the top of my list on “churches that I want to attend one day.” This is one of the fastest growing churches in the world. Elevation was started a little over 6 years ago by Pastor Steven Furtick, and now runs over 10,000 people. They are a multisite church, and are starting a 7th campus this fall. I wanted to give you a few thoughts about the church that impressed me. These thoughts can be some thoughts to implement in your church to grow your local church.
- Incredible Hospitality- Elevation was hospitable from the get go! As you drove onto their campus, you sensed a joy that you were present. I mean, their parking lot crew was stoked that we were there. I mean if you have the parking lot crew stoked, the entire church is probably excited. One neat idea that they did was put signs up for visitors to turn on their flashers so that everyone knows that they were first time visitors. Then, they parked us close to the door since we were visitors and directed us to the visitor tent. The volunteers at this tent were helpful, but not overwhelming! Then, we went in, and the hospitality continued. If your church’s hospitality is not being executed at a high level, let me encourage you to improve in this area. It means a ton to your visitors. We need to start thinking like visitors if we are going to reach visitors.
- Excitement & Energy- The entire church was filled with energy and excitement. It was not just the staff or even the volunteers. I saw everyone excited. By the way, this starts with the Pastor. If Pastor Furtick did not seem excited about church, the people probably would not, but the Pastor is stoked and so is the church! It was evident. I wish our church could be this excited about worshiping the Lord!
- Thought out Services- The worship service was creative and very thought out. One thing you will notice about growing churches is that they continue to keep things fresh and creative. They rarely get in a rut or a routine of doing something. They choose to keep things creative and new. The service was well thought out, and very creative!
- Vision & Mission Oriented- Essentially, I would say that most churches carry the same vision of the Gospel, but few carry out effectively! Sure, we all would all agree that the glory of God and the Gospel should be the focal point of our church, but few act like they believe this! Elevation believes it 100%! They have their vision written on the walls…literally! It is everywhere, and you can tell that the Pastor and the entire church believes in the mission that God has called them too.
- Unbelievable Preaching- Say what you want, Pastor Steven Furtick is a great expounder of the Word of God! He can take the Bible, and practically tell people how to live it. It is surely a gift from God. You can tell that he studies and relies solely on God to give him what to give the congregation.
[Question]: So, how is your church doing? As I saw a few of things lived out at Elevation, I was convicted about our church, and I want to improve. Let’s all gain the vision and mission, and allow God to live it out through us! Remember when the church is functioning like it should, it is the hope of the world!