Two thousand years ago, in the Middle East, an event occurred that permanently changed the world. Because of that event, history was split. Jesus rose from the dead. Nobody else has ever done that.
And Jesus’ resurrection has changed the world. It has changed history. It has changed me, and millions of others.
Easter is the Good News about God’s Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who came as a human baby, born into King David’s royal family line. Four historical records say he showed himself to 500 people at one gathering.
There are three elements that are important for our churches to know in celebration for our Easter weekend; Invite, Prepare and Host. Let’s look at each of these task and their implications.
We encourage people not to just give a hand out and “invite”, but invite a friend, colleague, associates, family personally by saying, “I will be attending our 9:30 a.m. service and I will meet you at the Welcome center and I will sit together with you in that service”.
Why do this? Because people desperately are in need of Jesus. The only way for people to meet Jesus is to be told about Jesus, usually by a friend, and often by a friend who has been willing to invite them to experience their church family with them.
There will be people there that we are not used to. Our usual seats will be taken away by our guest. There will be more people in the worship center area. We must be prepared in order to celebrate together this joyous occasion.
We ask our congregations to be in prayer in preparation for our corporate worship. Not only to gather and wait till the public worship, but private worship in their homes.
These are few things you could do even this Sunday as you prepare to gather with your church.
Not a single person should feel like they were not welcome to church cause they weren’t able to find a parking space, didn’t felt the warmth of welcome by greeters and no one lead them to be seated in the worship area for service. Everyone needs Jesus. And when I say, “everyone” I mean everyone.
Everyone. Not a select few. Not the elite. Not the special ones, or the frozen chosen, or the good-looking people. Everyone needs the Lord Jesus.
As if we were to host a party at our home, in order to have a successful party we try the best to be a good host as we think of being hospitable, welcoming, warmth and we put a smile on our face. How much more for our churches on our Sunday morning?
I’ve even felt this at coffee shops before. You walk in the first time and the baristas and regulars look at you like you aren’t supposed to be there. It’s scary. That’s what many people assume will happen when they walk into a church for the first time. People are taking small steps and seeing results in their services by making people feel more welcome.
The first-time visitor shouldn’t feel singled out. They should feel like they’re at home. They want to feel valued and welcomed.
We can be with Jesus with flesh on and give a word, look and a touch in the name of Jesus. It’s time to love. It’s time to invite. It’s time to share the wealth of the goodness of God and the riches of grace found in the risen King Jesus through us welcoming with loving arms!
Now, there are plenty of anti-large-church rants on the internet, urging us to avoid overdoing our promotion or our production – to keep it small and meaningful, as though large can’t possibly be meaningful.
“Unapologetically pro church growth and church health.” That doesn’t mean bigger is better. Better is better. But being better often leads to getting bigger, and that’s okay.
Here’s my challenge to you – my reasons why you ought to maximize the potential of Easter Sunday at your church as an opportunity to host as many guests as possible. Why? Cause Jesus is worth it.
Your success won’t be measured, ultimately, by the number of seats you fill but rather by this question: Did you do the best you could to make the most of this present opportunity to share Jesus with as many people as possible? Were you faithful and engaging with our first time guests?
Go big for Jesus. He is absolutely worth it! And people are worth it.