Buried in the Old Testament (1 Chronicles 12:32), lies an isolated reference to the people of Issachar, “…Who understood the times and understood what Israel should do…”
The Good News is that our Message is timeless. The challenge is that our methods must be updated. Just consider the music industry: from a turntable, to reel to reel, to 8-track cassettes, to CDs, to DVD, and now, online. FM radio stations are going off the air around the country for lack of patrons!
Ministry methods change as well. Doing what we have always done and expecting different results is what many refer to as insanity. One of the most important responsibilities of pastors is to define reality. Our reality reveals a long period of decline. We can no longer assume the adults who grew up here will raise their families here.
Ahhh, but thank God for the people of Issachar in our midst who understand the times and know what God’s people should do! As we seek the Lord and the counsel of the leaders entrusted to us, our goal is to finish 2018 as the third year in the last fifteen years we did not decline. And our prayerful goal for 2019 is to grow by at least 10%.
How? God has given us divine direction for such a time as this. Our Vision is to look, live and love like Jesus. How? Our Mission is to be and make disciples of Jesus that love God and neighbor. How? Our three-fold Strategy is Worship (our love for God), Community (our love for one another), and Service (our love for the world).
10% growth? Surprisingly simple. All it requires is one new family each month! Imagine our Journey Groups (whether a Sunday Class or Small Group) with one new family each month! Imagine our Morning Moms with one new family each month! Imagine our Kids Gym with one new family each month! Imagine our Journey Teens with one new family each month! Imagine our Journey Kids with one new family each month! Imagine our Overflow College Ministry with one new student each month! Imagine our Golden Heirs with one new family each month! Imagine our Choir with one new family each month! Imagine Celebrate Recovery with one new family each month! Imagine our Pray for One 201 with one new family each month!
To grow by 10% next year, we don’t need each of these ministries to add one new family every month (although that might very well be possible); we simply need any one of these groups to add one new family.
And some of this is so easy to do! For example, if you are retired and/or available during the day, you could volunteer in a rotation once a month to help support Kids Gym, meeting community parents and grandparents who bring their children and grandchildren to our facility for a safe and fun play time. Pastor Kayleigh adds a ministry moment each week. How easy and fulfilling would that be?!
Are you in? Will you join Ellen and me, our pastors, our board, our ministry leaders?
Father, blow a fresh wind and fire of Your Holy Spirit in and through us, that our hearts would burn again with a love for just one more!