Home > church, evangelism, music, outreach, worship > Sunday Replay 08.24.08

Sunday Replay 08.24.08

Wow.  That little word doesn’t quite describe it, but it’s the one that I’ve heard over and over since yesterday…  We had a “banner” day, one that I really believe we will look back at and see as a crucial step forward for our church and our mission to reach this community…

Attendance was right in line with our current “normal”, which means we didn’t ding the YTD average, and even advanced it a tenth of a basis point or two – but I know that’s just stuff pastors fill up pages of yellow legal pad figuring out on Mondays (yeah, I know “yellow legal pad” is sooo old school)…  What was exciting was the new faces – several guests worshipping with us.

And worship band – you just flat brought it!  Your creativity is off the charts, the musicianship improves every week.  And when I think where we were a year ago, you guys just about make my head explode!  I’m so thankful for you and the part you play in our mission.

We continued the “Church on the Move” message series, looking at the Outreach That Makes Us Bigger.  Right off the bat, we concluded that “Bigger” does mean numerical growth because: 1) Every number is a person with a name, a face, a family, and an eternal destiny.  2) God intends for the Church to grow.  We took a lightning tour through the first half of the book of Acts and observed how many times we can see words like “multiplied,” “added,” “grew,” “large numbers believed,” etc.  A growing church was part of God’s plan from the very beginning.  And if we are fulfilling our mission, we will grow – there’s no such thing as a friendly, evangelistic, small church…

Then we looked at the encounter of Jesus and “the wee little man,” Zaccheus, to see a model we can follow in outreach to those who are far from God. 

  • Jesus looked for Zaccheus.  The man climbed the tree to see who Jesus was, but didn’t realize Jesus was actually looking for him.  We must make an effort to see the people around us who are searching for something.  We must offer them the chance to see who Jesus is. 
  • Jesus spent time with Zaccheus: “Today is my day to be a guest in your home!”  In spite of harsh criticism from religious people, Jesus spent time with “sinners,” and “tax collectors.”  We must be willing to go into their homes, have them in our homes, go into their culture, into their circles, among their friends… 
  • Jesus told Zaccheus the truth.  We don’t have the details of what Jesus said or taught while He was a guest in that home, but we see the results: a changed life and salvation.  In every relationship, the opportunity to tell the truth about Jesus will present itself.  When that happens, lives will be changed, people will be brought near to God.  We must be ready.

The response at the end of the message rocked me – I didn’t get an exact count, but the majority of people in attendance were down front, asking God to help them reach out to the people we all had prayed for Him to reveal to us.  I believe we will see many people come to faith in Christ because of those prayers.  Praise the Lord!

I told someone yesterday, “Our church has a fantastic future!” and their reply was, “The present ain’t too shabby either!”  That is true, but let’s make sure we never accept “status quo” or “good enough,” and drift into complacency.  Our mission propels us to advance the Kingdom, all the time, until Jesus comes!

HAMMER DOWN!

Have a great week!

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