Monday, October 18, 2010

The Old Bait and Switch

The other night Tom and headed to Queens for what we thought was an evening of worship with a wonderful recording artist. I’m not going to mention names to protect the innocent as well as the guilty.

The church advertised a concert with this artist. We were excited. It took us an hour to get there but it was worth the drive . . . or so we thought. It started right on time – we appreciated that, but the church’s worship team began to sing. They were good and I thought to myself – “The opening act.” That was fine. They sang two songs and then the artist came out. She was wonderful. She sang for about 20 minutes when the “old bait and switch” happened.

The pastor of the church interrupted because he felt he had something important to share. Okay. That’s cool, but he opened with this line, “I know we can all listen to the “artist” all night long, but I feel . . .” Let me stop you right there Pastor. Yep, I could listen to her sing all night, in fact that was why I came. I didn’t come to hear you speak. It wasn’t what he said was bad, it was that he spoke for about 20 minutes then proceeded to do ministry time and he called up the “worship team” instead of this well known artist to sing while he was ministering to the people.

I am all for ministry time and for people getting healed. Don’t get me wrong. I love to pray for people. This was advertised as a concert and not a conference. At a conference you expect those things to happen. A concert is a concert. We had been there now a total of an hour and half and I had enough. It was time to leave.

Granted no money exchanged hands – so it wasn’t like they “sold” me goods but it still felt like the old bait and switch. It’s not the first time this has happened. I think if you advertise something whether you charge money upfront or you ask for donations you should give the people what they came there for.

It got me to thinking about whether I do that? Do I advertise something and deliver something else. Do I invite people into my home for dinner and just give them dessert? Do I invite people to church and build it up in a way that they expect more than what they received? I hope not. I don’t want to be the type of person that advertise one thing and present another. I try to be honest with myself and who I am. What you see is what you get. I’m not perfect and I never claimed to be, but do I present myself in way that makes people think I am? Hmmm. Food for thought.

© Nadine Zawacki 2010

8 comments:

Dawn said...

Definitely food for thought - but I would have been totally unhappy with that situation!!

Reva said...

Exactly, what you said! Just as you did I think I would have done. Even if it is good, so what, I think that church and many others lose as many or more because people feerl vheated and taken. I have even been to weddings and graduations and other celebrations that turn into a preachers dream, a bunch of new prospects so they take advantage of the situation. Good point about what we each present to those around us also. Good food for thought.
By the way, thanks for visiting and yes...I need to do more on my own book but as you read...I've been overwhelmed but hope (again) to get the draft out again. Any more book prospects for you?

Dawn said...

Ironic... we've been talking as a family about this very subject: being who we say we are ALL the time and in all situations with all people.

Be blessed!

Scarlet Ily said...

From what I know about you, the answer to your question would be YES! You are the real deal, my friend, and that's what I love about you!!

The last time I went to church was when they "cast out demons" on a regular Sunday service and I left horrified...so I know EXACTLY what you mean. I wonder how the others felt (and the artist)...probably the same way you did and that's a shame.

jennifer said...

Sometimes it feels that there is a lot of staging within the church. Instead of an honest drawing by the Holy Spirit, the service is manipulated to evoke certain emotions and create certain responses. I have to be honest Nadine, this DRIVES ME BONKERS. I can almost picture leaders of this church planning to 'draw the crowd in' with the concert so they can preach. Trying to minister to people is NOT a bad thing, but I don't like dishonesty.

Sorry you were disappointed.

Have a wonderful week Nadine!

Brenda said...

Hi Nadine!
I was at a ladies retreat where my best friend was the guest speaker. She had prepared a continuation series and planned on having 4 sessions in which to speak. The first night worship went on and on and on (i know, I was playing the keyboard) and they prayed on and on for the same people who go up for prayer and deliverance all.the.time. Anyhow, it was so frustrating because tho' they felt they were being 'led by the Spirit', knowing what I knew I felt it was just an attention- grabber show. The reason I came to the retreat was because she was speaking. It was the last retreat I've ever gone to.
A little different circumstances but I felt like you...bait and switch.

Shionge said...

I am so with you Nadine and yes, there is always an 'audience' for ministry work and like you say, you were expecting to be entertained by this artist.

Bex said...

That's really weird. But you've got me thinking...