This morning my good friend pastor Tim Holt (pastor of Seacoast Vineyard Church) tweeted, “What an awesome Sunday! When people come ready to celebrate, it changes everything. Thx church!” I thought to myself, “That is so true.” Tim has a great church, and it’s no wonder because he’s a great pastor who loves his people and loves being a pastor. But his phrase, “When people come ready to celebrate, it changes everything.” made me think in what ways can a pastor help their members arrive on Sunday “ready to celebrate?”
Now I realize the bulk of that responsibility lies with the people themselves. But still, are there things we can do to help them come “ready to celebrate?” Here are a few ideas that popped into my mind:
1. Announce the sermon topic or title ahead of time either through e-mail, Facebook, twitter, or whatever means the church uses to communicate with its members during the week.
2. If you are teaching through a passage of Scripture why not announce that passage ahead of time (once again, using whatever means of midweek communication you use) and encourage your people to read that passage sometime during the week.
3. Take as many opportunities as you can to reinforce the idea of coming to church with anticipation, expectation of God’s presence and power. Remind them that a personal encounter with God awaits them all.
4. What about reminding your people to be on the “lookout” for visitors they might greet, or someone that might stand out to them that might need prayer. Our people need to be convinced that Sunday morning “ministry” is not reserved only for the pastor, the worship team, the greeters, the Sunday school workers, but that every member is a minister and God might have ordained this coming Sunday to use them in a powerful way.
Are there any other ideas you can come up with to encourage your people to “come ready” each Sunday? What a great question this would be to kick around with your leadership team. Let me know if you come up with any other ideas than the ones I’ve listed.
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Tim & Karen Holt