A Church Observed…..from a weblog post by Cathy Byrd February 2009
Tonight a young woman who works the night shift at the local mission told me she had seen a gentleman who is a member at the church I attend at the mission at 6:00am on a weekend morning helping some homeless men with an enterprise that he and another man have organized to give these men work. She was at our church for a weekly Christian 12 step fellowship meeting. While there she observed workers preparing for the annual women’s weekend. Also, two men came in with a large cooler to get ice for a meal their small group was serving to homeless people at a weekly downtown feeding site. This young woman commented that “there must be something going on at this church. Everyone I see who goes here is really busy with the Lord’s work.”
Would that it were true! She has observed a dozen or so members engaged in ministries of service to others and assumes that it is true of everyone here. It is true that our pastors and congregation have made big gains in fostering a culture of service over the last year or two. We’ve ramped up our missions participation- local, regional, and foreign. Still there are those who defer to others, who take the position that they needn’t do anything because there is always “somebody else” who will do it.
Our small groups are making progress in establishing service as an expected function of the group, on at least a quarterly basis. Some new ministries, like a prayer shawl ministry, are being born out of the conversations and connections through those small groups. People are finding common passions, interests, and abilities and joining together for impact.
There are moments when I am so proud of the kingdom impact that members of my faith community are having. Then there are moments when I contemplate the magnitude of the impact that we could have if only all the people who call our church their spiritual “home” caught the same vision and set about to contribute their time, talent, and treasure to the task of seeing it come to fruition.
In the meantime, I respond to this young woman and others who say, “I hear such good things about your church”, by saying , “Yes, we do have a lot going on for the kingdom!”