Monday, March 24, 2008

How should we judge Easter 'success'?

So, today is the "day after" and I'm still in recovery mode from Easter. I've managed to get some productive work done around the office, but I'm definitely not running on all cylinders.

One thought bouncing around my head is how to judge the "success" of an Easter weekend. Is it just about numbers? Which numbers matter most? Is something entirely different beyond numbers?

Here's what I know about our weekend. We had a strong Good Friday service, with around 60 folks at noontime. We had a great Easter Sunrise service, with around 80 people at 7AM. Our 9AM service had 260 people (usually around 100) and 11AM had 285 people (usually around 160), plus our kids areas had at least 40-50% more than a typical Sunday.

Does that mean Easter was a success?

We had dozens of volunteers get involved in our weekend activities. I had a crew that showed up at 6AM Sunday just to set up tables and chairs outdoors. We had about three dozen people involved in the actual Easter presentation, and we had new volunteers serving throughout the weekend.

Does that mean Easter was a success?

Things flowed nearly seamlessly throughout the weekend. We had no major problems, no major obstacles. The power didn't go out, the donkey didn't drop "Jesus" in the Palm Sunday scene, and we had enough parking for everyone.

Does that mean Easter was a success?

We don't actually know how many first-time guests came Sunday, but we had response cards from 13 (we usually get 3 to 5 most weekends). We had at least 5 people indicate that they made a decision or recommitment to follow Jesus, and I'm sure we had others who said a prayer but didn't respond to let us know.

Does that mean Easter was a success?

I guess that last paragraph has some of the most important "numbers" and info. The other areas are important, too, so it's hard to say. I'd call this weekend a success, but I'm still struggling with what was most successful -- and if our level of "success" could have been higher, and if more people could have responded to a chance at a relationship with Jesus Christ.