Summary: A sermon asking do other peopel feel comfortable around you at church.
HOW COMFORTABLE ARE YOU? -> RO. 12:13b
-this is my question for you today. Through everything we talk about, just be thinking how comfortable are you.
-but here’s the twist. I don’t mean how comfortable do you feel, I mean how comfortable to people feel around you. When we say this chair is comfortable, we don’t mean the chair likes how it feels underneath me, it means how do I feel in the chair.
-so let’s take it off us for a moment. How comfortable are you to those around you?
-Lorie and I got a little bunny rabbit a while back. [show Clover pic] That’s her. Now that bunny is comfortable. It doesn’t need anything, it’s never hungry, it gets all the attention it needs, sometimes more than other people at home, but it is comfortable.
-but here’s what I’ve learned. When the bunny jumps on Lorie, Lorie snuggles it and pets it and the bunny crouches into this “okay, pet me” position and they have a little scratch and snuggle fest. To the bunny, Lorie is comfortable. Then, after a few minutes of that she will jump on me, lunge at my face, nibble my nose, leave me a nice present of bunny poops on my stomach, then jump right back to Lorie for more snuggle time.
-I’m not that comfortable, at least not to our bunny. So I’ll ask again, how comfortable are you?
-I don’t know how many of you are like me, but I was raised in church and every so often I have to remember that not everyone views our lovely Sunday morning experience as I do. There are people that do not like how we worship, they do not like the gym, they do not like the relaxed atmosphere, and there are some who have never been to church and although I like it, it’s completely foreign to them and they have no idea what to do or say. Kind of like Christine…
[play clip from the television show "The New Adventures Of Old Christine" where she goes to church for the first time in years]
-just like everyone else, when it’s lunch time, they run out.
-now I would like everyone to do me a favor for one second. Imagine you are a visitor here. For those here for the first time, you got a little head start, but just think about it. We’re about 45 minutes into the service. Would you have felt welcome or would you have felt awkward? What would you have liked or not liked?
-the big question, who was comfortable here? Who made you feel welcome, and don’t look to the same person you talk to every single week.
WHO MADE HER MORE COMFORTABLE?
-look at Christine there, who helped her out? In that clip, how many times did people welcome here, and how many times did people stare at her?
-I really dislike doing those group readings out loud because I always breathe at the wrong time and mess up. I didn’t grow up in a church that did that. When I first got here, it did, it made me feel uncomfortable.
-I loved the guy next to her, he was obviously patient. But think about it for a second. When did he say hi? When she had problems with the Bible and the hymnal, did he share his hymnal with her, or did he give a scowl wondering why she didn’t know what to do?
-who was the only person to be friendly to her? The Pastor.
-now I’m glad the pastor was nice and friendly and caring and whatever. But you know what, to make a lasting impression on someone, it takes more than the pastor. I know, I’ve been to churches and ignored by people but had the pastor come up and say hi and it runs through my head. It’s their job. They just want me to come back and be a number. But think of it this way. Who has ever been to Wal-Mart and had a greeter say hello to you? Yeah, big deal. You don’t go “Wow, what a friendly place.” You know they’re doing it because they have to and no matter how friendly they are to you, you know in the back of your head they have to be nice. But what if some random shopper says hi. Suddenly, this Wal-Mart is full of friendly people.
-it’s the same here. You saying hello to someone makes a much bigger difference than me doing it, even though I like saying hello.
**Ro. 12:13b -> 13Always be eager to practice hospitality. (NLT)
-I could go for all day just on that verse. We’re going to go backwards.
1. PRACTICE HOSPITALITY
-we’re supposed to be hospitable. Now today, when I think of the word hospitable, it makes me think of be nice. Smile at someone. Maybe offer them a drink if you can. But just all around pleasantness.