Author Lynne Shivers

Church event planner and author of "God is in the Details"

Church Event Planning Gone Haywire! Five ways to get things back on track.

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Way before the moment you realize that things have gone off schedule, most likely there were red flags present, but did not recognize them or understood what they meant. One of my favorite scriptures is found in I Corinthians 14:40, “Let all things be done decently and in order.” Although we understand that this scripture, written by the Apostle Paul, is referring to speaking in tongues in church and having an interpreter present to explain what was spoken, I like to focus on the last two words….in order.

Pulling hair out

To have a successful event you have to plan for it. Event planning is simply following a myriad series of steps— in order— so that the event planning will run smoothly. Here are ways to get back on schedule:

  1. Take a deep breath…okay, based on your stress level you may need to take a couple. It’s hard trying to find answers when your mind is screaming about how far behind you are. Find a quiet spot and let your mind be calm for a moment. Think about your physical space, the background noises, your own breathing. You have to be in order first (in your mind, in your spirit) before you can hear from the Lord. The enemy bombards our minds with thoughts, yet the Bible tells us, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” (Isa 26:3)
  2. Jot down on paper or use your computer/IPad the things that have been done so far (this is to appeal to your emotional side that you’re not a complete failure!). Some things have been done you just have to bring them to the front of your mind.
  3. Write down what still needs to be done. Write as fast as you can as the tasks come to mind. Don’t worry about correcting your spelling, grammar or putting them in order at this point. The purpose is to get them out of your mind and onto something you can see.
  4. Now as you look over your list start to organize them. Tasks can be organized by category. For example:
  • Contact speakers: keynote/workshops, secure hotel rooms
  • Registration: create online registration form, order bags and name badges
  • Food: Contact caterer, determine menu

Or tasks can be organized by the week

  • Week 1: Contact keynote speaker and/or workshop speakers; secure hotel
  • Week 2: Create online registration form, order bags and name badge
  • Week 3: Find caterer, determine menu, return contract
  1. See where you can get help. Is there someone who can lend a hand? Eccl 4: 9-10 reminds us that it can be helpful to work with others.

Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour.

10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up.

Ask the Lord for direction on who you can go to for help. They may not be able to do things the way you would have done them, but the work will be done….and that’s better then it not being done at all!

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