Friday, March 18, 2011


By Pastor Bruce Oyen

     Sometimes midweek services are stuck in a rut. The same faithful few attend to carry on a longstanding tradition that seems to have lost its purpose. You get that feeling best described by the familiar words. “same old, same old.”
    Our church was in a rut of routine, but we found a way out of it. We decided to quit meeting in the church building on Wednesday nights in order to have an outreach at some of the local nursing homes and retirement homes. By doing so, we have an evangelistic ministry to non-Christian residents and employees of these places, and a ministry of encouragement to those who are Christians. Sometimes friends and relatives are visiting residents, and we have the privilege of ministering to them, also.
    This change has gotten more of our church folks to attend than when we met in the church building. And a high percentage of those persons participate in what we do by providing special music, by giving inspirational readings from Scripture and poetry. Someone usually gives a short devotional, too. Of course, residents, employees, and guests enjoy a hearty handshake, a warm smile, and brief conversation.
   Our new ministry accomplishes at least two things:
1) It gives us a sense of purpose. We know we are accomplishing something positive in the lives of the residents, employees, and guests who attend. We know it could lead some of these persons to faith in Christ, and we know it can encourage others in their difficulties.
2) It helps make our church known in a positive way in the community. We want our church to be known as a church that reaches out with the love of Christ, and this helps make it happen. This can cause those in attendance to reach out to the church for help in some way. It might be for a wedding, a funeral, marriage counsel, or something else.
    This simple change has gotten our church out of a rut of routine. That “same old, same old” feeling is gone. Maybe it will do the same thing for your church.

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