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Reaching people who don't go to church

Excerpted from an article by Carey Nieuwhof / edited by J. McLaurin

Let’s make a clear statement: Church is not about you being comfortable and happy.  It’s NOT!   It’s about reaching people who don’t know Christ and who don’t go to church.

It follows that, in essence, the mission of the church is to share the love of Christ with the world with the hope that everyone will come into a relationship with Jesus.  Of course, the big challenge is that unchurched people are not flocking to the local corner church.  Most Christians can’t seem to understand why,  We don’t understand what they are doing, or not doing, to change that reality. 

Statistically, there are many reasons, but a surprising number center around one thing:  Christians treat the church as if it’s their private club.  It’s their place and not everyone else is welcome.

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Reaching people who don't go to church: An Action Plan

Survey’s tell us that 90% of the people who visit a local church make up their minds within 20 minutes whether to ever return.  For us that means before the choir has sung or the pastor preaches – they’ve made up their minds about coming back.  Now that should tell us that we need to be changing the way we interact with new faces in our church!

What are the 7 things we should give up in order to reach visitors and unchurched people?

1 – Music:  It should occur to you that we all have a different all-time favorite song.  That we may even have a different favorite genre’.  That for each of you who like the 40’s sound there are a bunch who like the Motown sound of the 60’s.  And how about the younger 30 to 50 year old’s – what music do you suppose they like.  My guess it’s not endless versions of the Old Rugged Cross and Nearer My God to Thee.  It could be the stuff you hear on Z88.3 FM and similar stations.   Would your relationship with Christ be damaged if you were singing something other than hymns and dirges?  I don’t think so.  But it may be a welcoming sound to visitors to have some mixture of tradition, contemporary, jazz, blues and maybe even some Motown sound.  Would you be willing to give up some of your preferred music in order to reach  and welcome the lost?

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Free Concert Feb 17, 2018

CONCERT - SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 17th @ 7:00 PM: Nashville-based recording artists, Crosby Lane (named for hymn writer, Fanny Crosby) will be here in our Family Life Center. They will be performing some our favorite hymns along with the stories behind the songs and their writers. Bring your family and friends! Free admission!! Love offering only.

 

crosby lane article 2018

 

Wrapped up in the wrappings of the season?

 

Today, I've been contemplating how THE most important part of this time of year is WHY it's so important.  We all know the story, but sometimes we each get so wrapped up in the wrappings of the season that we don't stop to really think about it in detail.  For example, have you taken time yet to read the Christmas story from Luke 2 and Matthew 2?  Have you planned to read it sometime during this season or are you spending all your time on the wrappings?  Well, I want to encourage you to stop for just a few minutes to read those two chapters and revisit Bethlehem and remember how very gracious God was to decide to give up all of heaven and humble himself to come live as one of us so that He could become our sacrifice and save us from our sins so that we can live in Christmas happiness and joy FOREVER!!

Each of you is so very special to me.  Each of you has contributed to who I am today.  Many times during each day, I find myself speaking or doing something and remembering that I first heard it from or saw it modeled by you.  Thank you for your friendship.  Thank you for encouraging me.  Thank you caring enough about our church family to invest yourself in the family of faith, and in me.  I know I'm a better person because of you.

My prayer today is for you and your family to have a wonderful Christmas.  For those who are traveling, I pray that the Lord will bless you with a safe journey and will return you home without incident.  I pray that He will protect your home while you're away.  I also pray that God will bless you throughout the coming year with so many blessings that you'll feel compelled to stop and thank Him for being so good to you each and every day.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

Pastor John

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