TONIGHT (6-10PM) WE WILL HAVE A FAMILY NIGHT @ WILSON PARK. There will be food, games, music and just plain fun. Even if you haven’t participated to this point, come on out and enjoy a great evening with church and local families.
Why “in the community” this year?
This year, VBS was different. Instead of centralizing all of our groups and activities on the UBC campus, we went out to major communities (especially to parks) to conduct our VBS. Anytime you try something different, many challenges arise. But I have to say that the response has been indicative of why we wanted to do this. In the vast majority of our groups (6 locations in all) we had a greater number of guests than church families attending.
See, churches have a tendency to focus on just being attractional. Essentially, “if you build it, they will come.” Just because we have a great location doesn’t guarantee attendance, much less interest. As well, it emboldens our thoughts that buildings are the church instead of people. Instead, we see that the “city on a hill” is a church building instead of the gathering of the saints be light to the world.
Getting “out there” has been a great experience for many in the body. It’s more of what we need to become and do. We should seek out reasons to matter to our local community because we have the words of life, the gospel, to proclaim to them. We should seek out an audience, instead of sitting and hoping they will come to hear. Don’t get me wrong, we should invite others and seek visitors to our church gatherings. But the truth is, the church (and it’s gathering for worship) is not an “evangelistic warehouse.” If anything, it’s an “equipping house” seeking to train and build up the body for works of service.
So, break out of your comfort zone. Get “out there” and engage in the community, in people’s lives. You have the words of life, and should be willing to go wherever to bring such good news to others. We are here to serve them. God established us on this hill in Fayetteville to reach out, not hunker down. For some of you, you need to start tonight by getting out and connecting with the world around you.