What the heck was I trying to say? And why the heck was I trying to say it? Why, when confronted with such ridiculous questions by my "superiors" can I stand on what I believe - that growth comes from the inside out and that if we are preaching Christ and Christ crucified and serving people in becoming followers of Jesus, then we are living as a submitted body of Christ and HE will take care of the rest. But when it comes to a single man who is inquiring about our congregation I get nervous and feel compelled to justify our existence by the industrial standards that are such a part of our American Church culture i.e. how many members? How many baptisms? How many first time confessions of faith? How much is being tithed? Etc... I knew that this fella attended one of the large Evangelical Free churches in the area and I wanted to puff my chest and show him that we could compete.
COMPETE!!!!! Forgive me Lord. What the heck am I doing'?
What is our Mission? What do we say at Churchtown?
Love Each Other
Love Your Neighbors
Being a football coach taught be a great many things over the years. One of the most important, paradigm shifting revelations that I came upon was the fact that football coaches do not create playbooks for the players - they create playbooks to impress other football coaches. What, you may ask, does this have to do with anything that I am talking about? Stay with me - You see, I have read so many church "mission," "vision," and "ministry" statements and they sound fantastic! You know the deal - serving the poor, the orphans, and the widows... following God's call wherever it leads, making and growing disciples, feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and providing opportunities for all ages to worship in traditional, contemporary, blended, coffee shop, workshop, and whatever other worship "style" is trending that week. I have read so many of them that I have come to the conclusion that they are, indeed, being written not for those who are seeking Jesus, but for those who are seeking church - and for other pastors.
There is much being made of the church. Question... Is there much being made of Jesus?
Love God - Luke 10:27; Philippians 2:4; Galatians 6:2; John 14:21; Psalm 91:14
Love Each Other - Luke 10:27; John 13:34-35; 1Timothy 5:8; Ephesians 4:32; Romans 12:10
Love the World - Matthew 28:19; Proverbs 21:13;
I know, I know, written like the pastor of a small church. Our Father in Heaven only knows how I would respond if Churchtown grew out of her pews over the next 6 months. I am just trying to figure out what being faithful to my Lord looks like where the rubber meets the road in the spiritual hospital we call church here at Churchtown. The sign reads "Churchtown Church of God" - not the "West Shore" Church of God, or the "Greater Carlisle Area" Community Church of God. I believe we have been called to serve this village and my faith is in the Christ and His ability to meet the needs of the people - not in my own and the programs that I can create. Please let it be so.