Here is a fun little video of how we kicked off Easter 2012 at Mosaic. If nothing else, I hope it gives you a laugh or brings a smile to your face. However, I thought it might also be helpful to share a a few words on why we do things like 80′s covers on Sunday morning.
One, we place a high value on having fun. One of the things I have come to love about our community of people is the almost constant presence of joy and laughter. There are times to be serious, of course, but there are also times to enjoy the ride and celebrate how very good God is. After all, as a people redeemed by God’s grace, we have every reason to celebrate.
Secondly, everything we do is with the person in the room who is furthest from Christ in mind. Quite frankly, they are why we exist. We care deeply about those who wouldn’t normally associate themselves with church or Christianity. And so this affects everything we do.
That being said, we have found that when people walk in and they experience something they may not normally associate with church, it has the potential of creating a “huh” moment. A friend of mine who pastors a church hear Portland calls this “the uncrosser.”It’s that moment when a person who walked in unsure of whether they really wanted to be there – the skeptic, the doubter, the leery – uncrosses their arms for the first time. It’s when they first have the thought, “This is alright.” (My friend tries to do something every week to accomplish this. Which although it demands a lot of work and creativity, I think is brilliant.)
That is ultimately what we are trying to do with many of the things we do on a given Sunday, whether it be a cover song, an artistic element (like a painter, dance, spoken word piece, a refugee choir from East Asia), an unexpected video (meaning probably NOT an overtly Christian production), all the way to the language being used up front, the illustrations and stories being told, even the venue itself. Each is an opportunity to connect with people in a way that is real and perhaps unexpected.
Notice, the goal is not to be different or innovative. As we all know, being different is not always a good thing. And it is a horrible goal in and of itself. Personally, I’d much rather be effective than original. But when people not only experience something unexpected, but begin to sense that you are real and they personally connect in a way that makes them feel, “They get me,” then that person is now in a place where they can begin to hear and receive what God has for them. And that ultimately is where we are trying to help people get to.
I’m not recommending everyone do cover songs, or any of the things I’ve mentioned for that matter. In fact, like a bad live drama sketch, I’d venture to guess that doing it poorly or taking yourself too seriously would probably have the opposite effect you’re going for. But it works for us. It’s consistent with who we are and what we are trying to do. Ultimately, however, you have to be faithful to be the unique pastor, church or ministry God has called you to be.