Church Impossible

Image from

Image from

My wife and I like to watch the show Restaurant: Impossible. If you aren’t familiar with it here is the skinny. A world renown chef, Robert Irvine, goes into failing restaurants with a design and contracting team and turns them around in only 3 days. He identifies problems, recreates environments, trains up deficiencies, tweaks menus, and then leaves with a project that SHOULD succeed if managed well. (I’ve never followed up on the website to track the actual success rate.)

We were watching the other night as Chef Robert walked into a mess of a place with only weeks to survive in its current form. Immediately there are blaring issues revealed. Nothing special there if you watch the show.

The thing that was different was the owners reaction. The expert ran down a list of things to be done better, never again, or for the first time and the owner just said, basically, “I know,” over and over and over.

I immediately thought about my ministry. If an expert came in, what would he find? What would he think I should change? Certainly there are changes to be made that I don’t know. But what things would be rattled off in front of me and my only response would be an embarrassed “I know.”

Fix those things.

Clean the backstage. Rewire the stage. Organize the files. Follow up with those volunteers.

It is rarely a massive issue that hurts our effectiveness, it’s the little things. Take some time to maintain, tweak, and re-evaluate before you find yourself in a situation like Restaurant: Impossible. Things don’t have to get ugly.


Travis Paulding is the Production Director at St. Simons Community Church and oversees media, presentation, and all things tech at SSCC.