Good Morning SCCC Family,
* Its another great morning in San Carlos! Well, a few more farewells last week as people continue to return home for the summer. But there’s still a pretty good sized group of “die hards” sticking it out, in faith believing its “not hot” outside. About 75-80 adults left for the service after the children were dismissed. There always seems to be a few guests as well. But things are relatively quiet on the home front here. No Seattle/Vancouver/Hermosillo type traffic jams happening on Beltrones (Main Street) of San Carlos. I just saw some of the traffic jams on the Vancouver roads on tv this morning. I’m not sure I could enjoy an hour drive to the work place anymore!
* Another addition to worship this week – Yes, and what a job she did on the keys. Ruth VanKirk joined the rest of the crew and with Ryan’s leadership, they put together an excellent worship set! So good to see folks using their giftedness to bless God’s family.
* Please note that Mayra will not be in the office for the next few weeks. She is in Dallas at a Leadership Event for some continued training in Children’s Ministry. And then she’ll take some of her holidays as well.
* What a great time after Sunday’s service. Some really neat people in SCCC. People who are willing to wrestle with the Scriptures to gain a greater understanding of who Jesus is; people not satisfied to just live the “status quo” kind of anticipated Christian walk, people willing to ask the real questions they have on their hearts; people willing to get beyond pretense, to be vulnerable, people who resemble the Bereans of Acts 17, so aptly applauded by Paul for searching out truth. I so enjoy those kinds of conversations. Another person came and asked about baptism and shared that several of them would like to discuss what baptism would look like for them. If you’re interested in baptism, please call/email me as we’ll be meeting in the next couple of weeks to talk about that. All of the above makes for a very good day.
Prayer Link: http://www.sancarloscommunitychurch.com/pastorsdesk/prayer
* Sermon Series – We looked at “soon” in the context of Jesus’s return last Sunday. I’m sure you, like myself, have wondered about “soon”. We understand it within our own context of time. But as I look at Jesus’s return in light of both 1 & 2 Peter, it seems to have much more to do with a Mindset, than it does a Time Frame. Peter is very clear that what holds the Lord back is His desire that None should perish. NO one! The sad reality is that there will continue to be people who reject Him. I’m so grateful that He waited long enough for me to come back to Him! I know many others whom I praying will also come to know Him before He returns for those who know Him.
Peter reveals to us how we can know if we are living with this mindset, this anticipation of Jesus’ return and he gives us three things to test how we’re doing. Praying harder is the first. If we’re truly living like Christ is coming back soon, that we understand there is no more opportunity to make things right with Him after he returns, we will be praying sincerely for the folks we know who haven’t yet made him Lord. He secondly challenges us to love folks deeper, not only “church folks”, but strangers. Why? Well throughout Peter’s book that answer has been obvious – so they can see who God is through our actions. And finally, he challenges us in our service, to use “our” God given giftings to influence those around us. The answer to the question, “are we living in anticipation of His return”, can be answered very quickly by reviewing how we’re doing in each of those three respective areas.
This week, Lord willing, we’ll finish this book by looking at I Peter 5.
* Read another great article from Thom Rainer this morning. Thought provoking for sure! Hope you enjoy it!
Have a great week serving Jesus,
Pastor Glenn y Jeannine
Six Attitudes That Kill Evangelism in the Church by Thom Rainer
Here are my notes from an interview I did with a church member recently.
Question: Do you believe evangelism should be a priority in the church?
Question: Is evangelism a priority in your church?
“Not really. Our pastor doesn’t do much about it. And we get no help from our denomination.”
Question: What are you doing personally to be more evangelistic?
I won’t bore you with statistics about declining evangelism in our churches. You don’t need me to convince you most churches are not reaching our communities with the gospel. You don’t need me to provide data that shows our churches are reaching fewer people today than just a few years ago.
But why are our churches less evangelistic today?
That question could be answered from a number of perspectives. But one of the key explanations is simply an attitude problem. There are several dangerous and debilitating attitudes in churches that are killing evangelism. Here are six of them:
- “That’s what we pay our pastor to do.” The hired-hand attitude toward the Great Commission is debilitating. It emanates from an attitude of comfort and entitlement among church members. And, above all, it is totally unbiblical.
- “Our church members are just not evangelistic.” This quote comes from pastors and other church leaders. It is the other side of the coin of the blame game noted in number one above. Pastors who make those comments typically aren’t evangelistic themselves. And the number one correlative factor of an evangelistic church is an evangelistic pastor. If pastors are serious about their churches becoming Great Commission instruments, they must begin by looking in the mirror.
- “Our denomination does not help us.” This attitude is a continuation of the blame and deflection issue. Evangelistic churches do not depend on denominations to lead them to share the gospel. They see the Great Commission as primarily an issue of local church responsibility.
- “We emphasize evangelism once a year in our church.” If evangelism is just another emphasis in the church, it is dead on arrival. It must be an ongoing priority of the church. The Great Commission is not just another event; it is living the priority of sharing the gospel.
- “I don’t know anyone well who is not a Christian.” This attitude is part of the greater issue of the holy huddle in many churches. If the church members are not intentionally developing relationships with people who are not Christians, evangelism just won’t happen. Here is a test to consider. How many of the groups or classes in your church are regularly seeking to connect with unbelievers?
- “We don’t have the resources.” The most effective evangelistic churches depend on two key resources: prayer and obedience.
The decline in evangelism in our churches comes down to just a few key issues. Too many believers see evangelism as the responsibility of someone else. Closely related to that issue is the matter of blame. It’s the pastor’s fault. It’s the church members’ fault. It’s the denomination’s fault.
I have seen churches make dramatic turnarounds when just one person decided to be radically obedient to the Great Commission.
The question should not be: “What about them?”
The question should be: “What about me?”