Yesterday Everett and I put a new window in the church sanctuary. There’s a small room in the back corner that had been used to handle the church offering on Sunday mornings and to keep track of Sunday school attendance. We’re converting the room to a “Baby Get-a-way” so when parents feel the need to leave the sanctuary Sunday mornings with their little ones, they will have a place to go so they can still see and hear what’s going on in the sanctuary (with a speaker in the room). Regardless of how much it’s used, I hope the new room will send a message that we want to accommodate people with infants.
The church (universal) often says the right things, but then their actions don’t always match their words. I don’t feel like I have to argue this point – I think we can just about all agree on that. Some churches say everyone is welcome, but then some in the church let people know they’re not really welcome. I’m talking about, for example, if it says in our bulletin that everyone is welcome at the Wednesday dinners, but if I or some of the church people speak poorly to or about people who come (like how many desserts they take, about the way they are dressed, the mess they make, about how they jump up to be first in line, etc), then we are letting them know they are not really welcome, not matter what it says in our bulletin. And that doesn’t mean those people who jump up first every week might not hear a devotion one evening about “the first shall be last and the last shall be first”. Some people have confused making people welcome in church with condoning sin or avoiding Biblical truth. We welcome them, but we also don’t avoid the truth that Jesus teaches. And if people feel unwelcome by a church that teaches Biblical truth, we can’t help that.
When a church says it wants to be known for caring about the community, they need to be doing something to show the community, not just providing lip-service. When a church does get involved with the community, they usually don’t have to tell anyone that they care about the community – people can see it. We won’t have to tell anyone that we want young families in the church. they will be able to see that we really do because we are changing things up to help them feel more welcome.
When we build our new multi-purpose facility, put in an indoor playground, and open it up to the community on snow days, we won’t have to say anything. They will do the talking for us. We will be putting our faith and belief into action, just as we’re doing with the new “Baby Get-a-way” room.
You can now see that we please God by what we do and not only by what we believe. ~ James 2:24