I’ve been reading many books about the church lately – from being a welcoming congregation (which every church thinks they are) to small groups. The ‘being welcoming” is more than just how friendly the congregation is. A five minute ‘passing of the peace’ is not welcoming to a guest when they are sitting alone as church regulars greet each other, but I digress.
One thing I read is that the church can easily send mixed messages. For example, if a church is building a $500,000 addition to the church and sends $500 or even $5,000 to missions in a year, it’s difficult to convince guests that the church cares about missions. Even if the church says it does, spending 100 times or 1000 times more on ourselves would send a mixed message.
Another example would be if a church says they want young people, but they will not allow a projector in the church or anything other than old hymns to be sung in the church. That’s a mixed message. Which is it? Do they or do they not want young people?
I want to get our church to the point that everything we do is about our mission. I believe God gave me a mission in Mason that nearly all of the people in Mason latched onto while I was there: “Offering the hope of Jesus Christ to every person in our neighborhood and in our world, by being the hands and feet and voice of Christ.” Everything we did was motivated by that mission.
I’m not sure what it is here at Wesley Chapel. Maybe it’s what Jesus said in Matthew 28 –
And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you…”
What’s the mission of your church? The big picture? “Keeping the doors open” is an admirable goal, but a bad mission statement. Visitors aren’t going to join a church if that’s the mission – and the congregation doesn’t have to have that as a written mission statement. Guests can tell what your mission is.
And even if you feel like you’re not in any kind of position to influence your church for Jesus, you’re wrong. All authority is His and He’s sending you.