I heard a great story two weeks ago while attending the Storyline Conference with Donald Miller. (Did you hear that crash? That was me name-dropping.) He spoke about a guy he knew who walked into an elevator at his hotel and realized that he was on the elevator with only one other person.
As any of us would have been, he was overwhelmed with the magnitude of the awesomeness of this moment, so all he could say was, "I'm a big fan!" Bill Murray, in his understated, humble way, simply said, "Thanks." That's it. End of encounter.
When the elevator got to the ground floor, this guy and Bill Murray walked off and out the front doors of the hotel and walked separate directions. When they got about 30 yards apart, Bill Murray turned around, sprinted at the guy, and tackled him into a bush in front of the hotel. As the guy lay sprawled in the bush, stunned, Bill Murray pointed at him and shouted,
"YOU WILL NEVER FORGET THIS!"
I wonder what we do as leaders or as Christians to make an experience unforgettable for someone else. The majority of sermons are forgotten within days of delivering them. Are we doing what it takes to make them unforgettable? Most churches or businesses you walk in are completely forgettable, but there are some - Google, Kirk Originals Eyewear, Nike Stadium, to name a few - who are doing it well. Are the experiences we give people at church unforgettable like these? And what part does our effort play? Is it solely the work of the Spirit, or the work of the Spirit through our creativity and ingenuity?
The same thing goes for our youth/children's ministries. What can we do to make their experience unforgettable? The goal is not so they will remember us and think our ministry is so great, but that they will remember God and His story and know that He is great.
What about our families? I want my kids growing up with lots of, "Remember when...?" moments. I don't want my kids to have a boring, mundane experience as it relates to their family. At the end of their lives, I want our family to be a prime source of unforgettable experiences.
The thing is, when Jesus walked the earth, I don't think that He didn't make an impression on people. His life was so unforgettable that we are still talking about Him 2,000 years later. And we have that same Jesus inside of us, so shouldn't the impact we have on the world be unforgettable as well?
How are you making an unforgettable impact on your ministry? Your family? The world? Comment and let me know your thoughts...
UPDATE: Here's one guy who made an unforgettable memory for his daughter...