After church thoughts (7/5/09)

We started our ministry at the Rock Hill church today! We’re looking forward to what God has in store for this church.

Highlights from today:

  • We met a number of new friends! It’s always exciting to meet new people and we met some great ones! I had my Moleskin notebook out writing down names and little tips to help me remember them (e.g. “Barbara is the hugger”)!
  • Today was a bit different than normal. We had an interview format in which we answered questions that had been submitted and took questions from the people of the church. It was a “get to know you” time.
  • Following the morning, we had a pitch-in lunch together.
  • We have an older congregation. I shared my thoughts on senior saints in the church… you are one of the most valuable groups in the church for at least three reasons:
    1. Your life experience. Many seniors in the church have been following Christ longer, married longer, and certainly living longer than a lot of new Christians! You have a lot to teach! There is no reason for you to be on the sideline! We need  you “in the game!”  By the way, there is a Biblical precedent for this – Titus 2:3-5.
    2. You are more likely to have financial margin and therefore a greater capacity to fund the vision of helping people discover the life Jesus promised. Seniors are more likely to have more $ flex than a family with small children! Seniors, you’re strategically positioned to be “game-changers” in this regard!
    3. You are more likely to have time to invest in service. I know you’re not just “sitting around” and that there will be scheduling adjustments you may have to make, BUT it’s not likely that you have children crying or an employer calling! You have time! When you invest that time in ministry activities you position yourself and your church to achieve maximum life-changing impact!

The crazy thing for our seniors is that in order to make the greatest impact, you will need to give up the most. The music, the style of dress, the format of the service, etc. may not be what you prefer, but in order to achieve maximum ministry effectiveness we have to adapt our approach. I celebrate our seniors because you have already demonstrated that you are willing to make adjustments! Way to go!

A few “High Fives”:

  • Amy! Thanks for taking the little people today!
  • Janet! Thanks for putting together the lunch!
  • Bud! Thanks for “interviewing” us!
  • Tommy! Thanks for getting there early and staying late to answer questions and show me around!
  • To the rest of you, thanks for welcoming our family and starting day #1 off on a good foot!

Over the next few weeks the plan is to meet with every family in our church and have the following conversation:

  • Tell me your story. What has God created you to do?
  • What do you hope/dream for our church? What do you believe God can do through a fully-surrendered group of people? I want you to dream!
  • I’m going to share what I believe God has called the church to be/do. It’s simply this – help people discover the life Jesus promised. (Check out how St. Paul said he fully served God)
  • Then I’m going to ask you this question, “How can you help?”

    Church, God has been writing several stories over the last several years. He has been writing the story of your life. He has been writing the story of the Rock Hill church, and He has been writing the story of my and my family’s life. Now He is bringing all of those stories together! I can’t wait to see how the “Master Storyteller” writes this next chapter!

    2 thoughts on “After church thoughts (7/5/09)

    1. I hope for your sake the “seniors” are receptive to change. I have to wonder though, if they’re not, are you?

    2. Paul I love your vision for your new church. But please remember you need to move slowly-The older generation is accepting of changes as long as they feel a part of the change and it moves slowly forward. You are an awesome pastor and they are very fortunate to have you. But I do believe if you try to change this quickly you will loose them..Trust God to move you at the pace you should move –it may be slower then you want but it may go faster…Just listen to the hearts of your people —they will love you as much as we do…You are in our prayers

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