Friday, January 22, 2010


As For Me And My House...Uh, NO!

Christian Web Trends wrote a whole series about"usability test" for web sites. Now for web sites this is a good idea, but they opened the post this way:
While businesses can certainly benefit from usability testing, so can churches…
It was only after that ellipsis that they qualified the sentence to be about web sites, so for a fraction of a second I was thinking about a usability test for the church itself, and they were not happy thoughts.

But if you think about it, we do such testing often. It maybe be as sophisticated as the focus groups done by mega-churches and TV ministry or as ad hoc as noticing what preaching topics are well or not-so-well attended. Anyway you cut it, anytime we are looking to "please the pews," we're doing usability testing of some sort.

That scares me. See, I'm stuck with the presumption that we're messed up - that what we want is not necessarily what we need. Of course, I understand that if we do not give people something of what they want, they will never come to get what they need, but I worry we that have lost the line somewhere. I also wonder if what they come for stands in the way of them receiving what they need.

I wonder if instead of attracting people we should not go get them? But that's an awful thought - that would require people that are already there to get up and do something. And that would mean we would have to produce actual results in those people.

What a radical concept - the church changing lives.

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