We started going to this new church that was recommended to us by a new friend of mine. The first morning we attended it was just me and the kids. Brian was traveling. After visiting a few other churches, it was refreshing that someone (his name was Mark) greeted me, saw that I needed help finding the nursery/preschool area, and almost recognized that I am a tired Momma in deep need of a spiritual uplift that morning. As the music started I felt relaxed and ready to praise God. My coffee helped as well.
A month goes by and we don’t go back to this church b/c of Brian’s travel, the kids being sick, and overall chaos at home. I know what some of you are thinking.. that’s when you NEED to go to church. I know I know……. you’re preaching to the choir. I just couldn’t get myself to go. Almost as if I felt like I wasn’t worthy to be there. (A whole other blog on that issue still to come)
The first Sunday of the new year we finally get back over there with Brian in tow. Again, the greeters are awesome! The coffee is good and strong! The Praise Band is rockin’! The message is right on target! I LOVE NEXT LEVEL CHURCH! I want to plug in and be a part of it!
Fast forward to this past Sunday. We learned who the Campus Pastor of the new campus is going to be and learned about what he is doing. There is a plan to distribute shot glasses to area bars in hopes to get the “disconnected connected”. It will have the church logo on there along with an invitation that says, “Give us a shot.” Brian thought it was innovative and just plain cool. He is inviting everyone he knows to this church (and if you guys know Brian you know that’s a stretch).
I, on the other hand, had mixed feelings (at first). As a Christian Momma, I want to surround myself with Christian friends. When I did that in Memphis, the outcome was amazing! My life was turned around! So, I’m thinking … Hmm.. I need to be spiritually fed here and being surrounded by people that aren’t in the same mind as me might not feed me. BUT, I thought about what Pastor Todd said, “Jesus surrounded himself with prostitutes, drunkards, thieves..” VERY TRUE! He loved the disconnected. His problem was with some of the most Religious judgemental folks.
I’ve come to the conclusion that the problem isn’t with this “shot glass concept”. The problem isn’t the disconnected people coming to the same church as mine….. the problem is with my heart! It’s a matter of MY heart. I’m in a place where I can be dragged down very very easily. I want to have a strong encouragement team behind me to keep me in the Word, keep me uplifted, keep me accountable! At the same time, I need to have my hand on someone disconnected. One hand up, One hand down… all striving to obtain or keep hold of a relationship with Christ. So, how do I minister to the disconnected? I still feel like I’m a newborn in Christ. I still feel like I don’t have the Bible Knowledge to help someone. What do I do? Change my heart. Ask God for Wisdom (I seem to ask Him for that alot.. I must need lots of it, huh?!), pray about it, make friends with non-Christians, reach out more so than I would with my Christian friends.
I think it’s crazy that with an attempt to reach the disconnected with these shot glasses I learn that I AM a bit disconnected myself. I can list every excuse for the reason I’ve slipped in my spiritual life since moving here, but I’m not going to. I know that God doesn’t want me to look back to a time I wasn’t near Him. He wants me to look forward with Him.
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