I have been thinking about how our Congregation could be more mobile which should be the mission of every church. In the Gospels, we learn that Jesus was always on the move. When Jesus called his disciples the call was leaving everything behind and follow the Son of Man. According to the Gospel of Mark, Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee and he saw two brothers, Simon and Andrew. These two brothers were fishermen, but when they accepted Jesus’ invitation they left their nets and followed him. Simon and Andrew left their safety nets behind for the sake of following Christ. Prior to following Christ, they fished, and sold fish they captured for making a living.
Throughout the Gospels, we read stories where Jesus moves from place to place. He would teach and feed thousands in one town and then he would move to a next town. The Gospels do not tell us about the house Jesus lived in, but they emphasize that he had no place to lay his head. For instance, in Luke 9:57-60, we read about a story of a man who wanted to follow Jesus and then Jesus said, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” Writers of the Gospels intended to highlight that following Jesus involves being on the move and making a difference beyond four walls of church buildings.
While Simon, Andrew and other disciples were willing to leave their safety nets for following Jesus, many churches made their church buildings their safety nets. There is an old saying, “when we build they will come!” This approach used to work many years ago but it does not work any more. Throughout my ministry I served different churches, I always enjoyed having conversations with senior citizens so that I could learn from their wisdom and learn how life was when they were growing up. There is something I heard in most conversation I had. Baby-boomers told me that when they were growing up going to church was not negotiable! Everyone supposed to go to church because churches played a crucial role in their communities.
Nowadays, we live in a world where going to church does not appeal to some young people. Churches that are thriving realized that they need to take church to where people live instead of waiting for people to show up. A new movement of merging churches has a different approach when it comes to discipleship. People gather in their homes for faith development and fellowship. Even though those fast growing churches have big and beautiful buildings they clearly understand the importance of making base of their congregations in homes of those who belong to those Congregations. As we are getting ready for new sermon series “Church on the Move” and launching A2-46 initiative, I am praying that God will prepare our hearts to open our homes for Bible studies and fellowship. If we are going to be a relevant church in this community for ten years from now, we need to be a church on the move.