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Several years ago, I wrote a book titled Opening the Front Door: Worship and Church Growth. It was a simple book, but rather controversial at the time. I made the case that weekend worship services had eclipsed Sunday School in attendance since 1971, and therefore, Sunday School was not the “front door” of the church in terms of outreach; rather, the large group weekend service was. Today, I am arguing that there is still a front door to the church, only that instead of it being physical it is a digital front door. And it can be handled in a way that is just as alienating as when churches used to sing nothing but hymns, play organs, sit in pews and pray in King James English.
Fifteen seconds on your Facebook page, Instagram account, Twitter feed, or webpage – 15 seconds into listening to your message or watching your service online – and they may have already clicked off because of what they’ve seen, heard or experienced.
Actually, 15 seconds is generous.
According to the research of the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the average attention span has dropped from 12 seconds in the year 2000 to just 8.25 seconds in 2015. That’s approximately a 25% drop in a little more than decade. To put that into perspective, the average attention span of a goldfish is 9 seconds. No, I did not make that up. We’re .75 seconds less attentive than “Mr. Bubbles.”
Filters - People - Today - Information
But what are really operating are highly evolved “eight-second filters.” People today have learned to sort through information quickly because there’s so much of it to sort through.
Now, once you do get their attention, they’ll stay with you.
They can become intensely committed and focused.
But you only have eight seconds to break through.
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Hell sometimes looks an awful lot like an office cubicle.