Today is Friday, June 15th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1085
Last night I had the opportunity to speak to a women's salad supper at a small rural church in Mitchell County. It was a presentation that I have given a couple of dozen times in the last six or seven years.
As I drove to the church, I had several thoughts that I wanted to share with the group. I told them among other things that we should not be concerned or feel inferior about the size of our congregations. God works through any sized group and that we should not focus on the mega-church in a neighboring large community. Enjoy them 'yes'; participate in something we might be invited to 'okay', but not compare. But we need get to work and do what God might have us do where we are.
I wondered with them aloud if we compared 100 congregations with 100 members each and the large congregation with 10,000 members, which one would have the larger tally board of things being accomplished for God's Kingdom.
I told them of Morgan Methodist Church of rural Dows which had an active congregation of about 70, a number of years ago. The internationally-known Upper Room, devotional magazine has a 24-hour prayer hot line. The hot line staff isn't based out of Nashville, Tennessee; it is based out of wherever the volunteer callers happen to live. With the ability to do phone line connections, the members of that small congregation had just completed a 24-hour shift from their rural Dows location. Not too small to do what God had wanted them to do; they just had to believe and respond.
While the church we attend isn't it in a country setting, we aren't a large congregation either. Last Sunday our minister posed this question, "What does our future look like? Are we looking back and lamenting how things used to be?" He said that growing congregations look forward with anticipation to a bright future.
When he posed the question, I thought about more members my age and older; not as many younger people in our congregation as we'd like. Maybe a program or two that has gone by the wayside.
A couple of days later, I knew the answer: our future as a congregation is bright because God is in it! He was in our past; He is in our today; and He will be there in our tomorrow!
I don't know what that tomorrow looks like. It will be changed, but our future with God looks bright!!