Bay Hills Church

The Looming Excitement of a Third Service

Bay Hills, we have a problem: we're growing. Now, I know that doesn't seem like much of a problem; we should be celebrating. And we are! However, growth carries with it a requisite amount of risk to manage as leaders. Fortunately, Bay Hills is no stranger to risk:

  • We took a risk in hiring me as Senior Pastor (or anyone for that matter). 
  • We took a risk with our 2023 budgeting process. 
  • We are taking a risk with our plans to build a new campus of our very own. 

This brings us to the looming yet exciting possibility of a third service. A decision that carries with it no less risk than any other decision we've faced. In fact, all healthy, growing organizations must regularly choose one of two paths: (1) read the terrain and embrace a culture of deliberate, prayerful risk, or (2) play it safe and perhaps fall victim to inadvertently stymieing momentum.

It's no secret which leadership path I favor. But this creates a number of challenges to consider.

Challenge #1: Timing

The need for a third service is not a challenge in and of itself (not really, anyway). The main challenge, as I see it, is timing. Not "if" we take this risk. But "when" to do it. Pull the trigger too soon, and we create an imbalance in attendance across our services, potentially sucking the energy out of all of them. Pull the trigger too late, and our current growth trend is instantly eviscerated.  

This means we must be able to pivot prayerfully yet quickly when the time comes. And when it does come, I'm guessing we will make this decision with as little as two weeks' notice to the church. We hope more, but not less. Therefore, everyone at Bay Hills will have to be ready to step up to the plate to adapt with us. The timing must be right; we don't want to miss our window.

Challenge #2: Balance

Everyone likes being in a full room. The energy is palpable, and the environment is exciting. However, the initial transition requires we look past the superficial and look forward to the substantial. Simultaneously, we recognize the need to create some semblance of balance across all three services. Why? To love newcomers well in providing an optimal guest experience. To that end, we will need your full cooperation as a community.

What does this mean? I'm glad you asked! Many of you will be asked to move to a particular service to allow guests to attend a more "accommodating" time. We anticipate the following service times when/if we make the move:

  • 1st Service: 8:30a (no Kids Ministry to start)
  • 2nd Service: 10:00a
  • 3rd Service: 11:30a

Start mulling it over and talking it over as a family. What does this mean for you? Your morning routine? How can we adjust and pivot as a family when the time comes? Later down the road, you may be able to pick and choose your service according to your preference, but for a season, we may ask something different of you. Are you ready?

Challenge #3: Volunteers

This one is a doozy. If it seems we're always recruiting volunteers, that's because we are. All churches operate at a volunteer deficit most of the time. Adding another service only increases this need exponentially.

Beginning Sunday, October 8, our "Rooted" series will focus on spiritual gifts and this particular need for the next two weeks. We ask that every guest and member consider this important next step critical as we move forward together into this season. High areas of need include:

  • Kids Ministry
  • Ushers & Greeters
  • Production/Tech

There are a ton of other places that have need, as well. Many will be on display in the lobby these next couple of weeks. Take some time to pray and investigate where God might be leading you. Where can you get involved as a contributor rather than a consumer? Where can you be part of the solution to help us meet this particular challenge?


It's an exciting time to be at Bay Hills. Revival is real. Revival is here. But revival requires all hands on deck. It requires each of you to become a more rooted member of our community in this season. Revival is not a spectator sport. It is a team event where everyone pulls together in the same direction. As we move closer and closer to the need for another service, we hope each of you rises to meet the challenges we are facing as we contend for revival in the East Bay.

I, for one, am fully confident we will do just that. 

1 Comment

Keith Clayton - October 5th, 2023 at 11:43pm

For the Safety team we are always undermanned, so not much change. It’s @ an extra hour 1/2 early and 1/2 later. We have done this before. One Question, when we build the new sanctuary will it be fore one or two services?? Growth n change are good things just a lil scary.