Over the last three months, our Church has seen numerous guests at our worship program. Some of them have returned and are slowly moving toward joining us every Sunday to worship. We love all of the new people, but I am more excited when they move from this concept of it being a place they attend to a group of people to which they belong. At some point I want them to move from being a guest to calling it their home Church.
I have noticed two changes in the life of people that shows a shift in their thinking.
1. Issues are no longer someone else’s problem. Imagine you are walking out the Church, and you see a piece of trash laying on the ground. What goes through your head? If the first thought is, “Someone needs to clean up their facility.” Then you are still a guest. If your first thought is, “I need to pick that up to keep things looking nice.” Then you have become a part of the Church. Obviously, that is just one example, but you understand the point. Taking ownership in the Church comes when I say, “I need to help fix issues” instead of just pointing them out and waiting for someone else to handle it.
2. Involvement is not seen as an inconvenience. When you connected to a group of people, you are willing to serve with them in some capacity. Once again, imagine you are visiting the community theater. One of the volunteers approaches you and asks you to help pick up the trash. You might look at them in disbelief and offer a few moments of half-hearted service just to make yourself not look bad, but that is about it. Now imagine the same group asks you to help plan next years event and be a part of the whole production. When you agree, your overall view changes. Now you show up early, stay late and even pick up trash because it is your production.
At some point, everyone who attends a Church has a decision to make. Will you remain an outsider to this community? Will you keep your guest status intact as you visit each week? Or will you become a part of the group? Will you take some ownership of the Church?
If you do feel like are genuinely a part of this group, it will be seen in your attitude and actions.