Friend Day… and a heavy heart

At a church that I have been visiting, they had their annual friend day, which reported some impressive numbers visiting Sunday School. The evening service was mostly dedicated to talking about what happened and it kind of left me with a heavy heart. Let me tell you what I experienced and show you my perspective.

The numbers were outstanding. it was reported that, overall, there were more vistiors than all the goals of the individual Sunday School classes combined. Therefore, God MUST have been in this effort. It was also reported that a lot of people worked very hard in inviting people to come. They were persistent, asking people over and over. Even going so far as getting people to sign commitment cards and mailing it back to them before the service to remind them to come. They emphasized the hard work that people went through to invite people.

The congregation gave a standing ovation when the numbers were read. It was also suggested that for the church members that new someone that didn’t come, keep on being persistent and ask them, “What about next Sunday?”

Let me say that I don’t mind people inviting someone to church, but I do have an issue with church being an outreach program. Let me be absolutely clear, you are not fulfilling the great commission by inviting someone to church. That is NOT evangelism! Our churches seem to spend massive amounts of time, effort, money, and prayer getting people into our churches, but what we should be doing is pouring this effort in equiping the members to GO OUT and preach the Gospel to every creature. You want your church to grow? THEN GO OUTSIDE THE WALLS OF YOUR CHURCH WITNESS TO SOMEONE!!! Tell a stranger about sin, judgment to come, righteousness, and give them the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

If you want to say that the numbers verified that God was working in this effort, then I would have to say the same thing for Joel Osteen’s church, or Rick Warren’s, or Rob Bell’s, or Perry Nobel’s, or Bill Hybel’s. Is it possible this was a man centered effort, producing a result from hard work instead of divine blessing?

I think we have lost our orginial mandate and we have looked to our pastor to do the heavy lifting. That is why my heart is heavy.


Published in: on November 3, 2008 at 8:24 am  Leave a Comment  

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