As a pastor, this has got to be one of my biggest pet peeves: cheesy church signs. For those of you who don’t know, even a simple sign like the one above costs thousands of dollars to have. It’s a serious investment in introducing the community to the church. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think God relies on our signs to build His church … but if they’re making His church look like a joke, it can’t be that great, right?
Here’s the deal; I drive up and down route 202 on my way to and from church almost daily. I’m still new enough to the community to have my knowledge of other churches pretty much be limited to the stuff they pop up on their signs. When I see goofy, churchy lingo, etc., all I think is that the church isn’t in tune with the world around them. I don’t think they’re trying to make their church a laughing stock, it just happens. We have to remember that most of the world doesn’t speak our lingo, and when we have goofy little slogans, sayings or whatever, we look like the Star Trek fans making Trek jokes to each other – weird. I mean, yeah, us Trekkies are pretty impressed with each others’ wittiness, but no one else is!!!
There was a church in Maine that I have always thought used their sign better than anyone else I had ever seen. They were across the street from a high school and the message changed from week to week to communicate support to whatever was going on in the community; they’d cheer on the football team during football season, the baseball team during baseball season, celebrate local holidays, congratulate accomplishments, etc. To me it showed a church in touch with the surrounding community and engaging itself with them. Instead of inside jokes on the sign, they used it to build bridges to their neighbors.
If the sign is the only voice people hear from the church, the words need to count!