Monday, December 03, 2007

Sunday attendance

i don't know exactly how to say this without appearing ungrateful, but here goes. as a pastor, two of the most difficult sundays of the year for me to face are the sundays on either side of thanksgiving. they usually represent two of the lowest attended sundays of the year because people leave to visit their families.

don't get me wrong. i'm not a family killjoy. i love my big thanksgiving dinner and sitting around watching bad football on television with the best of you. even though loading up the fam in the minivan to visit grandma and grandpa has never been my thing, i know the holidays wouldn't be the same without it for many. but the sundays? they are usually weak, a little depressing and...let's just say the offerings are less than stellar. (for the record, things were a little better around here than most years.)

that's not my issue. here's my monday morning insight... i was pretty stunned yesterday. the sunday after the thanksgiving sundays had fewer people than the holidays! i know there were as many different reasons as there were people missing, but it was still a little shocking.

the good news? church attendance does not punch our ticket to heaven. it's not even a healthy way to evaluate our commitment to christ. it's a horrible way to get rid of guilt. i'm so grateful we don't live by rules, traditions, laws and requirements. it's a awesome reality to know that following the master is so much more than coming to a building on sunday mornings.

with that said, i wonder if people really have any idea how pumped i am when the building is full and the excitement in worship is ready to bust the walls out? i wonder if people knew how inspired and motivated i am when i see the house full and the looks of expectation...would it make a difference on saturday nights or sunday mornings when they are deciding whether or not to join us? i wonder if people realize how much their simple presence makes in the lives of people they are sitting next to in worship?

why not give someone a call and have them join you next sunday?


GReggo said...

you say things so well, dude...

and you looked mighty great atop the bus on saturday!

Binxy said...

It's so unique how various people view numbers.

Quality is always there when people who love God get together to really worship Him, even if quantity is not topping the charts.

LTechie said...

I understand the comradre and boost in spirit when many are gathered together. Like binxy said, quality is there when people who love God meet to gether for worship (freely paraphrased) - but the feeling of worshipping with a great number of brothers and sisters in Christ makes my face hurt from smiling so hard and so long! It's great. You can have soft quality and you can turn up the volume with numbers. I'm thankful for your work in the Kingdom, padre! I miss being there in person.