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KEEPING VISITORS COMING BACK

David and Beverly stood in the doorway of the adult Sunday school class and looked over a sea of unfamiliar faces. Beverly had coaxed for weeks to get David there. Their first child was due in four months, and Beverly wanted that child to have a church home. David kept citing a bad experience with "religious people," but he was finally willing to try church again since they had just moved to this area.

Maybe this time I'll meet some nice people, David thought.

Maybe this time, Beverly prayed, someone in there will introduce David to Jesus.

I shudder to think how many Davids and Beverlys visited our class and walked away with needs unmet. We didn't realize it, but we weren't giving them a chance.

Our pastor first noticed the problem. He called one evening and asked if I would join him for breakfast at a local restaurant. "Sure," I said. "What's up?"

"We need to talk about the couples class."

I wasn't sure what he was driving at. Our class was well established; it had existed for fifteen of our ...

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