I just got this note from your pastor. You weren’t aware that we knew each other, were you?
He said he’s not comfortable sharing this with you. But I’m not scared, so here goes.
Dear church member,
I’ve been flipping through the rolodex of names in my mind, and yours keeps coming up. Could be that God’s placing you on my mind for a reason. Maybe it’s accidental. But I’m betting it has something to do with the all-knowing, all-powerful God of the universe.
See, our church is growing. Like crazy. You know that. You see the new faces every week just like I do. You hear the stories of brokenness, the depth of shame, and the need for grace. Since you’ve spent more than 1 week with us, you see needs all around you every week.
So I started praying for you. That God would prepare your heart for serving others. That you’d be willing to use your gifts, talents, passions, relationships, and energy to lead more and more people to Jesus.
I just recently asked you to ______ (lead a small group, join the student ministry team, go to camp, help us set up on Sundays, be a greeter, join our worship team, etc.), and you told me no. “I’m just too busy right now. Maybe next season I’ll jump in.”
Can I be honest with you? Yes, since this is my letter? Ok. Here goes.
You won’t jump in next season. You’ll be busier then than you are now. Life never slows down, it only ramps up. You won’t have more time next season…you’ll have less time. Life doesn’t carve itself out for what’s most important…it carves itself out of a well-worn rut of the most urgent. Life doesn’t slide towards what’s best for you…it slides towards what you want.
You’re not too busy. You’re too selfish.
News flash: We don’t create environments just for you to sit and soak.
You’ve been doing that so long you’re shriveling up. You’ve gotten spiritually fat here in our church. It’s time to get off the couch and start serving. Start giving. Start going. You’ve learned enough, grown enough, and been served enough for 10 lifetimes.
Since you’ve been invested in, start investing. Since you’ve grown, help others grow. Since you’ve seen God working in others, it’s time for Him to work in you and through you.
Lead that small group. Join the worship team. Get out of the country on mission. Give sacrificially of your time until it hurts. The Gospel is worth it, isn’t it? The people you sit beside on Sunday morning are worth it. Our community is worth it. Your neighbors are worth it. The next generation is worth it. The current generation is worth it.
Your spiritual growth is worth it. Because I guarantee you you’ll grow as much in this process as those you’re leading will.
And this is just as much a commission to me, your pastor, as it is to you:
Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” – Jesus (Matthew 28:19-20)
Don’t sacrifice your family. Don’t burn yourself out.
But get in the game and quit being selfish.
Church isn’t all about you.
Signed with love,