God has already brought most of our future leaders to us but they remain overlooked and undeveloped. Sadly this happens primarily because we are busy doing the work of the ministry when our call is clearly revealed in Eph 4 to equip these undiscovered saints for the work of the ministry. Involve them! Invite them! Initiation discussion with them! They carry something very important to the next dimension of your church family.
Recently I decided to begin exploring unique and creative gifts that are in people who I would consider strong leaders in their circles of relationship. We simply provided a lunch and invited discussion that has been very enriching and helpful to the mission of our church!
The opening question is simple, “What would you want to invite your friends and your family to at church?” How can we more effectively do more of that? We are simply cultivating greater enthusiasm about showing up to church.
We have 52 opportunities every year to connect with families. I printed a layout of the 52 Sundays all clearly defined for everybody’s reference as we talked about these things. I’ll post this at the bottom of this blog but basically it’s just a layout of the obvious days like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Grandparent’s Day, Easter, etc. We were also able to discuss Christmas and New Years Day which are Sundays this year just to get feedback.
It is very important to note that I clearly gave a boundary for our conversation. Nobody was allowed to tamper with sermon material. We have moved away from clever sermon series that are aimed at intriguing self-help topics. We are digging deeper into a greater understanding of the nature of God by exploring theological truth on deeper, more meaningful levels. Just to say my role is to deepen and mature believers in Scripture and I’m more clear on that than I’ve ever been.
Considering this I’ve been hungry to hear creative ideas about how we can capture those who may not be mature in their appetites. Children’s involvement was huge as people get excited about their kids doing things in services. We are now implementing a quarterly involvement with children and a youth takeover twice a year where we focus on raising up next generation leaders.
The ideas were all great and most importantly they were customized for the heart and soul of our church family. I believe this is a vital point that most pastors are missing in this day of chasing successful models and pursuing opportunities. We have to stop trying to find what works for other churches and start truly discovering who we are. Digging in to the hearts of those around us is the key to exploring the deposits God has made in the hearts of those entrusted to our care.
Prov 20:5 Purposes of a person’s heart are deep waters, but one who has insight draws them out. NIV
In addition to great ideas like a basketball shootout between service the weekend before the NBA championship, etc we got much more. We got a greater inroad of relationship with some wonderful people in our church family that I wouldn’t normally have a lot of personal interaction with.
It’s all about relationship! Making the time to love God and dignify each other is the work of the ministry. Blessings as you all continue on your work of expanding God’s work in the earth!
Sundays of 2016:
|MONTH||DATE||EVENT||DESCRIPTION / NOTES|
|JAN||1/3/2016||1st Sunday of the Year – 40 days|
|1/17/2016||(Martin Luther King Day is Monday)||40 Days – Outrageously Loving|
|1/24/2016||Baby Dedications||Passionatey Pursuing|
|1/31/2016||Discovering Destiny||Irrationally Giving|
|FEB.||2/7/2016||Water Baptism||Consistently Submitting|
|2/14/2016||Valentine’s Day||Effectively Discipling – Love God others||photos in lobby|
|2/21/2016||Andy Read – Links International||Enrichment Course|
|2/28/2016||Discovering Destiny||Starting the Prophets ???||Enrichment Course|
|MAR.||3/6/2016||Ministry Fair||Enrichment Course|
|3/13/2016||Daylight Savings begins||Dale Gentry||Enrichment Course|
|3/20/2016||Palm Sunday||Enrichment Course|
|3/27/2016||EASTER SUNDAY||First World Problems||ONE BIG SERVICE + EGGSTRAVAGANZA|
|APRIL||4/3/2016||Next Gen takeover Sunday||First World Problems||Enrichment Course|
|4/10/2016||First World Problems||Enrichment Course|
|4/17/2016||First World Problems||Enrichment Course|
|4/24/2016||Discovering Destiny||First World Problems|
|5/8/2016||Mother’s Day||photos in lobby|
|5/29/2016||Memorial Day Sunday / Discovering Destiny???|
|6/19/2016||Father’s Day||Car Show|
|6/26/2016||Destiny Celebration (Water Baptism) / Discovering Destiny???|
|JULY||7/3/2016||Independence Day Sunday|
|AUG||8/7/2016||Promotion Sunday – kids & youth||Back to school||2016 Summer Olympics this month (8/5-21 in Rio)|
|8/14/2016||Teacher Commissioning Service|
|SEPT.||9/4/2016||Labor Day weekend|
|9/11/2016||Grandparent’s Day & 9/11 15th anniversary||photos in lobby???|
|10/23/2016||Next gen takeover|
|10/30/2016||Discovering Destiny||Satan’s BD is Mon., Oct. 31 (do we have Fall fest on the Wed. prior or on Sunday evening?)|
|NOV.||11/6/2016||Daylight Savings ends / Presidential election on Tuesday|
|11/13/2016||Veteran’s Sunday (Veteran’s Day Nov. 11)|
|11/27/2016||(Sunday following Thanksgiving)|
|DEC.||12/4/2016||Pledge Sunday for 2017||Christmas photos in lobby|
|12/25/2016||CHRISTMAS DAY||ONE CHRISTMAS SERVICE ???|