"Preach the gospel at all times, if necessary use words." - St. Francis of Assisi

Monday, December 05, 2011

Day 9 of Advent - Preparing for Christ at the Publix..

The past couple of Sundays, I’ve had to scoot out of the church between services and make a quick run to the corner Publix for an item or two. It has struck me both times how incredibly busy the store is at 9:45 on a Sunday morning. I am seriously not being judgmental, but the majority of folks are not dressed as if they were coming from or going to church. Many looked like they had just gotten up and going on a morning grocery run. Others had a full cart as if Sundays were the best time to do their family shopping. Some were scanning the deli shelves for lunch and others were hanging out at the pharmacy.

“Why are these folks not in church,” I wondered. It is hard for me to realize that not everybody in the world goes to church and are out living their lives as if there weren’t three churches within a block of that Publix. Then, I started to think (scary as that is). If the church wants to reach the unchurched, why don’t we go out to where they are on Sunday mornings? Once in a while, a class could head to the local shopping center on a Sunday morning to just share a word of encouragement to the people, to pass out a welcoming card to a local church, give them a Merry Christmas button or sticker, to sing Christmas carols in the parking lot…anything to shake things up for Jesus. In the spring and summer, head to the neighborhoods and speak a work with those doing yard work…give them a bottle of cool water…give a cloth to tie around their necks to wipe the sweat….I don’t know…get creative with it. Folks think they are safe from the “church-people” between 8:30 and noon on Sundays, so they come out and run all their errands….so, why don’t we surprise them? Catch them where they live.

I don’t mean we should do this every week, but on occasion, why not? Advent is all about preparing the world for the coming of Christ. Paul tells us that he has learned to “become all things to all people that they might be saved.” Reaching them where they are. In Matthew, we are told to go into the world to tell, teach, and make disciples. Maybe coming outside the church walls on a Sunday morning is one way to do this. I wonder where Jesus would be? Sitting inside a sanctuary 52 weeks a year, or taking a week to go meet folks at the Publix?

Blessed be the Name of the Lord!


At 10:40 AM, Blogger scatterbrained said...

I read Angela Hunt's book, The Debt. Though fiction, it really spoke to my heart about reaching out to people in their turf instead of expecting them to come to mine, such as a church. Their turf may be an abandoned house, a gutter, a grocery store, a laundromat, etc....

The Debt is definitely a keeper.

So enjoying your blog.

At 10:22 AM, Blogger waqar qureshi said...

I liked it and really it is so interesting and wonderful information, too!


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