Summary: Have you ever wanted something so badly from God that you were willing to not let Him go until you got it?
If you could go back and get an accurate count, how many decisions do you think you made last year? If the truth were to be known, the number would probably be in the tens or even hundreds of thousands, wouldn’t it?
Now, exactly what is a decision? A decision is a point in time where you have to either leave something in your life the same as it always has been, or to change it to something different. You can make a decision on which color shoes you wear, on where you live, etc., but it always boils down to either changing something or leaving it stay the same.
Change. Offering changes, to be exact. That is why we are in business, isn’t it? Offering the chance to change lives through making Godly decisions.
Our focus is not about money, even though the church does need money. Our focus is not about being well known in the community, even though we must be known to grow. Our focus is not even about having many activities for the members, even though we do need to have activities for our members. No, our main focus as a church has nothing at all to do with any of these. It is simply about changing lives for God, through Jesus as our Christ.
Diana and I do not have personal knowledge of what this church was before we got here. But, just since we have been here, we have seen some changes and some of the reactions to those changes. I will be very honest and tell you that everyone in here seems to look forward to what lies ahead with a very refreshing mindset. That is such a blessing, not only to us, but also to the rest of this church body. And, I pray that God blesses you abundantly for your positive and loving attitudes. It is because of that, this church will go forward.
To be effective in reaching the unchurched in our community, we must be willing to change some things about our service as time goes by.
For instance, in the 1969, the Wheaties company put a picture of Rev. Bob Richards riding a bike on the front of the Wheaties box. The reason was that Rev. Richards had won a gold medal in the Olympic pole vaulting contests, and as a current sports hero, they utilized his name to draw attention to themselves.
In 1998, 25-year old Tiger Woods had become the golf hero of the day, so Wheaties utilized his picture on their box to draw attention in this time and era.
But, you will notice that the essance of Wheaties, or the cereal within the box has never changed one iota from day one.
So, when we see a church add new types of songs, or change the formats of their services a little, we need to know that this is being done to attract the unchurched within the community.
The unchurched listen to radio. The most listened to type of music today is called easy-listening contemporary. These people will refuse to go anywhere if they have to listen to a type of music they do not feel comfortable with.
If we offer them some of the same type of music to listen to as they are already comfortable with, they will be more willing to accept other things in the church, like the true Word of God. And, that is when we shall have the ability to offer them the information that will affect their eternal souls.
But, as much as we need to change some aspects of our service, we must be very sure that, just like the cereal within the box, the true Word of God that we teach and preach stays true and never changes.
This morning, we witnessed just such a change. Wwe witnessed the birth of our Praise Team. What a beautiful job they did, too! Melody was wonderful in her solo, wasn’t she? And, this change in our singing will work to the good of helping us offer others the chance to change their lives.
Of course, we all know that this church cannot change anyone’s life by itself - that any and all change in a person’s life is all from Jesus Christ working in their lives. That is good for the church for two reasons. First of all, by knowing that Jesus is the only life-changer here, it keeps us from getting the big head and thinking we are doing it instead of Jesus.
Secondly, it shows that Jesus Christ is alive and well and in this church. And, I think that sums up what Rolling Hills Christian Church is all about.
As a matter of fact, Christianity is all about the changing of your life, but the only changing that will be of any good is the kind of change that changes you from the inside out. And when that happens, you will know it is directly from Jesus Christ who has set up residence in your heart.