Volunteering

“Thriving churches have a culture that honours and celebrates their volunteers. Their volunteer teams are characterised by camaraderie, fun and mutual respect. However, experience shows that this does not just happen. The key leaders must build it into the culture of the church.”   Steven Matthew.

Churches across the world are full of loving volunteers that give willingly their time, skills, experience, money, emotions, energy, love and loyalty to their congregations and the building up Gods people and churches in their areas. They are priceless and a necessary group. This army of people are in many cases what keeps the church going and without their support and energy working tirelessly in the background most Pastors and leaders would not have a church to go to. They are indispensable. And they are amazingly awesome!!

How does our church honour these wonderful people? How are they encouraged to keep going when they are tired and feeling unloved? How do we thank those who are the backbone of all we see happen on a Sunday and throughout the week? We need to be as committed to this group as much as we are committed to any other mission we have. These amazing people make the impossible possible by their giving to God all they have. We are on the receiving end of their support, but know they do it for the Lord of Lords.

We need to celebrate involvement and those who give all and give a little.

Better Communication

Good communication is needed in every relationship, but I feel more so now that a lot of our words are typed through text messages or emails. We have lost most face to face communication, and since there is a high percentage of how we speak is done by body language or facial and vocal expressions, there is much more of a chance to get the wrong message from the one that was meant.

Our relationships thrive on good communication, and I feel it is the nutrient needed for a healthy relationship, whoever that is with. It could be your Pastor, spouse, friends, shop staff, employees, postman, the list is endless.

Norman Wright explains that when people communicate there are at least 6 messages that come through.

What you mean to say

What you actually say

What the other person hears

What the other person thinks they hear

What the other person says about what you said

What you think the other person said about what you said

This shows how important it is to think and work on how we communicate with everyone we have contact with. By spending more time working on what and how we say to others, we can make sure more of what we say is clear and helps us to smooth out any weaknesses we may have in this area.

If we want a relationship to go deeper, then we need to grasp how to communicate with that person, not just in what we say but in how our body and  vocal languages come across. We all have some hang ups in this area. We may have a fear of opening up to others for fear of rejection, fear of being hurt, low self esteem or image. All these factor in when we open up to anyone. The relationship will only ever go as deep as you are willing to communicate with openness and honesty. Say what you mean, and work hard to say it in the way you would want it to be received. Try to put yourself in the other persons shoes for a minute and think about how you would want that sentence, greeting, criticism, word of encouragement to be said. How would we want to receive that spoken and unspoken communication?

Try to be constructive and focus on the positives of the other person or group.

Proverbs 18:21,” your tongue has the power of life or death.”

Bring life and love to our relationships.

 

Teams

Church life depends on groups of teams who give time and energy to making sure church life runs as smooth as possible. It is a group of two or more people ideally. It usually has some sort of leader or a nominated person who takes on board creating the rotas or creating jobs for individuals within the role of the team they are involved in.

“But most other church ministries would be far more effective if they worked as a team: a pastoral group rather than just a pastor; an eldership in harness with a minister; a music group to reinforce the organist; a finance committee assisting a treasurer. Harmonious teamwork doesn’t just add to the effectiveness; it multiplies it. It brings fulfilment and personal growth to each team member. And it’s a working model of Christianity in action to the people the team is serving.”

In the steps of Timothy, Lance Pierson

 

The Calvary Road

Roy Hessian says in his book The Calvary Road:

“The outward forms of revivals do, of course, differ considerably but the inward and permanent content of them all is always the same – a new experience of conviction of sin among the saints; a new vision of the cross of Jesus and of redemption; a new willingness on man’s part brokenness, repentance, confession and restitution; a joyful experience of the power of the blood of Jesus to cleanse fully from sin and restore and heal all that sin has lost and broken; a new entering into the fullness of the Holy Spirit and of His power to do his own work through His people; and a new gathering in of the lost ones to Jesus.”

Revival is taking place in pockets all over the world and each one is different in how it starts, how God’s touch fall, how many are saved and complete in Him, country, people group. There are so many variations of the same thing, but a true revival or renewal will see many or all of the content that Roy Hessian talks about. It is the same God and same Spirit that fell on Abraham, on John the Baptist, on Elijah, on Jesus at His baptism, through Jesus on the cross. He never changes, and salvation and reconcilliation will always come through Christ and His saving blood.

What do you want to show?

All churches are full of culture, personality, vision and character. Church is a living, breathing organism of people from all different backgrounds, jobs, ages, and even old age “social classes”. We all bring something with us and each member has their own talents and gifts to enrich their church family.

But what do we look like from the outside? What do we show the local area?

Every church has a vision, and a statement of how they want to fulfill that vision. When was the last time your vision statement was updated? Is it still a valid vision for your area? Has there been a change to housing, new estates been built or knocked down? Has there been a big drop in the local economy, a loss of jobs, a number of jobs created? Has the number of families increased or decreased since your statement was created? Has your church grown or seen a number of people left? Has the leadership changed? These will all have some affect on the vision of the church in some way, even if the change is a positive one.

Does your church want to be relevant to the local community? Then from leadership down, it must been shown and lived out. Devotion? Be devoted. Live what you preach and teach, live and breathe the Word.

St Francis of Assisi said, “Preach the gospel at all times, and if necessary use words”.

Actions speak louder than words, so what we live and communicate is vitally important. We can be watched by our communities, and if we are living different to our vision and teaching, then how do we differ from the world? How do we show ourselves to be the Bride of Christ in a world that lives the opposite of what we see in the Bible.

Think about how our fellowships are coming across to the outside unchurched locality. Welcoming? Accepting? Bible believing? Christ filled? Empowering? Devoted? Loving? Teaching?

continual worship

Psalm 34 vs 1

I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.

Psalm 146 vs 1-2

Praise the Lord.

Praise the, O my soul.

I will praise the Lord all my life,

I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.

The Bible is full of praise to the Lord. And it’s not just the 2 hours we manage on a Sunday morning. Its more than trying to do the right thing in church, it’s an attitude of life. It comes from our hearts. The Psalms tell us to praise with everything, and at all times. It is constant.

Psalm 145 is a whole song of us recognising and worshipping God because we can see how He is full of love and what >He has done for us through the giving of His most treasured Son. We can trust God and know His love will never fail. Doesn’t that make us want to praise at all times? How hard are our hearts when we read how much He loves us, created us, cherished us, died for us, defeated death for us.

Praise doesn’t have to be only when we are with other people, only for when we are at church or a meeting. It is something we can do in our private times, the same as our private times of reading the Word and praying.

LaMar Boschman says in his book A heart for worship

“How do you know you are a worshipper? Worshippers spend time in Gods prescence. They like to linger thwere. They are not in a hurry to leave His prescence. They worship often because they delight in Gods prescence and in giving Him honour, reverence and exaltation”.

I want to spend more time just sitting and being in the prescence of God. To feel Him with me and sitting in silence together. That level of intimacy is what  I myself am aiming for. I want to be there, and know its up to me to get there through worship in my life

Commission

Luke 4:18-19

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He has annointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lords favour.

Matthew 28:19-20

Go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Soirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.

This is very clear in the New Testament. This is our mission. Jesus came with this mission and fulfilled it, along with the wonderful work of reconcilliation He finished on the Cross. We exist yo worship God and to proclaim Him to the Earth with  a purpose.

Most churches have mission statements, and can be long and detailed with many words. Do they contain within them, no matter how ling or short, the mission they exist for? Does the church operate within the mission given by Christ?

The Church is a growing, living thing and changes all the time. Each church changes by generation to generation, Pastor to Pastor, Elder to Elder. As a church grows, it might need to look again at its mission statement, it might need changing or rewriting. Above all, I feel a church needs a mission statement, and it needs to be known by every member and followed from Leadership down. It has to be taken on by all as a personal mission within the community and local areas, and within its own walls. If we start with the words of Jesus and try to follow His ways, we wont be far short of the right paths at any time, but only if we stay as close to Him as we can.

Previous Older Entries

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,546 other followers