Where is the best place to sit in our church building?
Perhaps fundamental to the way we answer this question is whether you mean best for you, or for the church as a whole or for the sake of more people learning about Jesus.
There may be good reasons that we prefer to sit in a particular place such as habit, practicality, health or the need to make a quick exit. So generally we need to be pretty flexible about where people sit and love each other by accepting our preferences. However sometimes the command to love means that we may choose to override our preferences for the sake of the gospel.
In the article linked below Paul Levy puts forward some good reasons why sitting as far forward as possible is best.
I think these arguments are enough by themselves but in our church at the moment there are even more basic reasons – it makes it so much easier for the stewards to see where the spare seats are and so much easier to fit everyone in, especially the visitors and young families both of whom often arrive near the start time.
To summarise, the reasons he gives are as follows:
[box type=”shadow”]1. Move to the front for the sake of singing: it will be much more unified if we are closer to the band and each other
2. Move to the front for the sake of outsiders: Visitors, especially the first few times they come want to be inconspicuous and the best way to do that and for them to feel comfortable is by allowing them to sit at the back. Wouldn’t we prefer that for them?
3. Move to the front for the sake of the children: Most families, particularly with young children and toddlers, like to be at the back. They can be in and out without disturbing the rest of the congregation.
4. Move to the front for the sake of the preacher: it really helps the dialogue going between the preacher and the congregation if people are close enough and there is s real sense of participating in listening together.
We have tried a few methods of encouraging this but to be honest they are not all that successful, so we would love to hear views and suggestions on how we tackle the very real and present problem that we need more seats available and easily accessible as the meeting begins[/box]
Please do comment below or if you’d prefer, email separately.