Wednesday, April 16, 2014

An Easter Primer

Hopefully this will arrive to you before Easter Sunday.  As you probably already know, Easter is typically the highest attended Sunday of the year.  More people will attend this Sunday’s services at churches all over America than will attend on Christmas or Mother’s Day.  But, while more people do attend on this Sunday than any other, fewer are attending than ever before.  According to a recent Lifeway study, 41% of Americans said they planned to attend, 39% said they are not planning to attend, and 20% said they were undecided.  That information leads to the following suggestions on how to make this is our best Easter possible as a church and how we can maximize our opportunities:

1) Do everything you can do to make it to church this Sunday.  No Christian should ever tire of hearing the Gospel or celebrating the Resurrection!  And your presence here is a witness and a testimony.  Don’t let a bright, sunny Spring day (or a cold, damp one) keep you from worshipping and celebrating this Sunday!  Let’s fill the services with enthusiastic worshippers giving a powerful testimony of our love for God!

2) Invite someone to come to church with you on Easter.  Offer to pick them up, meet them at the door, or take them to lunch after.  At least 20% of the people out there are still undecided.  Let’s urge them to a “yes”.  Use phone calls, emails, texts, Facebook, Twitter, etc.  Knock on some neighbor’s doors while you’re at it.  The benefits are eternal!

3) If you are a church member, consider yourself a host/hostess on this most important day.  The responsibility of hospitality and friendliness is a not a ‘job’ meted out to the greeters, ushers, and staff.  It is the calling of us all.  Be very intentional about speaking to anyone you don’t know.  Treat everyone like a special, invited guest.  

4) Pray – A LOT – for your pastor, the message, and all the people who will be hearing it on this day.  Pray for clarity, conciseness, and supernatural power in the teaching.  Pray that God will draw people to himself and that people will not resist, but respond to the Gospel.  Pray also that God will speak to you.

5) Begin thinking about what comes after Easter.  Far too often, churches experience a letdown of sorts after this big day.  Let’s do all we can to prevent that!  Let Easter be for us a launching point towards what God is going to do next in our church.  After Easter, we will begin as important a series of messages/teachings as I have ever done.  I am calling it RESET, with the aim of returning the church to the foundational responsibility and activity of disciple-making.  Let us both commit our selves to this and do all we can to connect with our newcomers and guests!


He is Risen!

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