Changing your chair at church isn't that big of a deal, or is it? As it turns out, it IS a big deal. Not so much for us, but for others. Now I will tell you that we normally sit in the same spot every week. Right side, second row, middle seats. Why? Well, our friends sit there, we like it there and we are comfortable there. All good reasons to keep sitting in the same spot.
However, for the last two weeks we mixed it up a bit, we changed our seats at church. We moved from the right side to the left side. We moved from the second row to the fourth row. We moved from middle seats to end seats. And, we created a mild form of chaos in the process. One of the band members even exited stage right to come by and make a funny comment to me about the “big move.” I learned a few things from moving seats that can apply to all of us in one way or another.
What Happened When We Changed Chairs?
It Caused Questions
“Why are you sitting over here?” “Why the change?” “Why did you move over here, did the ticket price go up over there?” Yes, I was asked all three of those questions and more. I actually wasn’t prepared for all the questions but it definitely piqued the curiosity of some. By the way, did you notice the first word in all three questions? “Why?” I like that question. It’s a good question to ask. Why are we doing things the way we are doing them? Why do we always do the same thing every week? Why can’t we try something new? Have you asked “Why?” lately? It may be time to ask.
It Created Awareness
After talking to one friend in the “new section” they told me they should go over to the other side to keep things in balance. A joke of course but I liked where his mind was going. Why not mix it up a bit? Throw things into a healthy chaos (as if changing seats at church is chaos). Being aware of others is an emotionally intelligent skill. Of course the majority of the people in the congregation at the service we attend don’t know where we sit nor could they care less about it. However, to those we know, including those on the stage, it created an awareness mostly because something was different. When we do something different it usually created awareness. Have you done anything different lately just to mix it up a bit? Why not give it a try and see what happens.
It Changed Perspective
Specifically, it changed my perspective. I was no longer looking to the left but to the right. I was looking at a different screen for lyrics and message points. I saw the speaker from a different perspective and watched the band from a different viewpoint. Heck, I saw a band member I could never see from where I used to sit. My perspective had changed and new things came in to view! I saw people who sit behind us in our “normal” section because I was now looking at them. I saw people I never see at church and they sit behind us every week! Changing your perspective doesn’t require a seat switch. Sometimes it’s an emotional move or mental viewpoint that, if changed, would allow us to see more clearly or at the very least, differently. How can you change your perspective or viewpoint this week? What could you see differently if you made a small change?
It Challenged Others
I had several people tell me, after the service, they were going to sit in a different spot the following week. What? Are you serious? A few people were going to change their behavior because we moved seats? I didn’t realize that simply changing seats in church would create a moderate disturbance in the 11:00am service but it did. Sure enough, the next week, at least two couples came up to me and said they sat in different seats.
Now you may be thinking how silly, superficial and stupid this is. I honestly thought the same thing. However, as I started looking at this experiment it came down to one simple thing for me and it’s this, any time you break routine it creates interest.
A simple seat change caused questions, created awareness, changed perspective, and challenged others to think differently. If you can get all that form changing seats at church I wonder what could happen if we did something a little more challenging?
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