After many years, I’ve finally uncovered the key to a healthy church-going experience: avoiding people. Not all people of course, but there are certain types of people you won’t see me hanging around on Sunday morning.
I know it may seem mean, un-Christian even! But trust me, it’s a necessity. A survival skill, of sorts. Avoiding awkward conversations, peer pressure, and distractions before, during, and after services has revitalized my whole church life.
This secret is something I’ve held very close to my heart, but now out of sheer kindness, I’m going to share with you my no-fail strategy on finding the safe zones at church.
Without further ado, here are the nine Christians you don’t want to sit beside on Sunday morning.
- The Unrequited Crush
Whether he won’t stop texting you or keeps asking you out on dates despite your polite declinations, it’s always a good idea to avoid The Unrequited Crush.
The Safe Zone: This safe zone is a lot less about where you are and more about who you’re with. Keep a safety zone of friends around and it’s much harder to get cornered. Bonus: by making sure you two are never alone, you don’t have to hear comments like, “You sure would make sure a cute couple!” Talk about an awkward moment.
- The Opera Singer
The Opera Singer has so much vibrato that there’s a rumor she’s the real reason the walls of Jericho came tumbling down. The great news is that God thinks this worship is beautiful. The bad news is you don’t. It can be quite the distraction during your time of worship.
The Safe Zone: You can sit as close as you’d like to the person, as long as it’s not directly in front of them. So you’re in the clear if you’re anywhere behind them, but I recommend a safe zone of three seats to their left or right.
- The Loud Whisperers
Loud Whisperers have this burning desire to comment on everything. Sadly, they were never probably taught to whisper. Unfortunately, Loud Whisperers tend to travel in packs so the occasional comment turns into a family discussion that’s almost as loud as the preacher himself.
The Safe Zone: Safe Zones may varies depending on a person’s volume but the only way to stay focused on the sermon is to stay out of earshot.
4. The Walking Bottle of Body Spray
Too much scented body spray. Maybe these people don’t have sensitive noses, or they don’t believe that there can be too much of a good thing. While it’s okay to approach these people for a quick hug, sitting near these toxic fumes can lead to a headache lasting all the way to Monday.
The Safe Zone: Your buffer radius should be one chair for every spritz of body spray. Five spritz? Sit five chairs away. Taking a step outside to breathe fresh air will help too.
5. The Volun-teller
Has someone ever volunteered you to do something without you actually volunteering? That’s what we in the church biz like to call being “volun-told”. Most churches have at least one person who’s always recruiting you to join their ministry without considering your schedule, gifts, or ability to serve.
The Safe Zone: No one is safe. I repeat: no one is safe! Volun-tellers can find you anywhere you are. They’re in the bathroom, the family room, even waiting next to your car. Always know where the nearest exit is and be prepared to duck into the supply closet.
By: Lindsey VanSparrentak