Saturday, March 2, 2013

A Church Hopper's Confession

        Growth-minded churches are always eager to welcome visitors, some of whom they hope may be potential new members of the congregation. They may be newcomers to the community who are shopping for a church to join.
        Or they may perpetual church shoppers, hopping from one church to another without any intention of joining any church. Every pastor knows the type, and they know that the kingdom of heaven will not be built on the likes of these.
        Our anonymous church hopper is speaking here for many others with a similar attitude toward the church, all of whom much prefer the role of visitor incognito.

                          VISITOR INCOGNITO

                      A visitor incognito,
                            if I a phrase may coin,
                      I'm always shopping for a church
                            I don't intend to join.
                      So every Sunday morning I'm
                            a master of disguise.
                      There's not a ruse that I don't use
                            to dodge those gals and guys.
                      I mean the ones who try to spot
                            the visitors in church.
                      I know most every trick there is
                            to leave them in the lurch.
                      They never see me staring with
                             an unfamiliar look;
                      I case the joint before I sit,
                            and don't go near the "book."  
                      To make sure I'm not recognized
                           I wear a false moustache,
                      and when the offering plate is passed
                           I never put in cash,
                      but slip a dollar bill into
                           a pew rack envelope.
                      The ushers think that I'm a member
                           of the church ---I hope!
                      Of course, I wouldn't dare to sign
                          the church attendance pad,
                      despite the curling eyebrows that
                          suggest that I'm a cad.
                      And when the blessing has been said,
                          and they all stop for news,
                      I exit out a window, or
                          I slide beneath the pews.
                      But somehow all my efforts seem
                          to be of no avail.
                      The greeters still can spot me ---but
                          they've never made a sale!


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