“What are you doing this summer?” Even though summer doesn’t technically begin until June 21, the observance of Memorial Day and the end of the school year herald the unofficial arrival of summer. And with that freedom comes the opportunity to pursue new activities and maybe enjoy some travel and time away from your normal routine.
Even though being an active part of a church is central to the life of a Christian, churches are not immune to the effects of summer. The crowds on Sundays and Wednesdays can be a little smaller, and giving to the church can often lag. This is just a reminder to me that we must always be intentional about our commitment to serving in and supporting our church, even in the midst of vacations and lazy weekends.
As you make plans for your summer, I’d like to invite you to add a few items to your list, in case they’re not already there.
First, continue to gather for worship and Bible study with our church. There is something altogether unique and necessary about the church being joined together for corporate worship — united in singing God’s praise and hearing His Word. And the call to make disciples who obey everything Jesus commanded requires the diligent study of the Bible, ideally in the context of a community of faithful believers. When you’re away, you’re missed by the rest of the body, and you miss out on what God is doing within our fellowship every time we gather.
Side note: With most of our college students away for the summer and many other folks regularly traveling, we’re going to try out “summer seating” for our 11:15AM Contemporary Worship Service. We’re encouraging everyone in the second service to sit closer to the front and toward the center. Our hope is that drawing closer together and filling up the front of the sanctuary will enhance our time of worship and fellowship. Once the summer ends, you’re welcome to return to your reserved seating in the back.
Second, continue to give to our church. With a church our size, we remain engaged in ministry throughout the year. Nevertheless, when summer arrives, several ministry areas actually increase their activity level and outreach, especially children and youth. In addition to our support for missions, it’s important that we maintain a steady level of giving to support the work of the church and build momentum as we enter the fall. One simple way to give when you’re away is to use our secure, online giving (https://fbctlh.org/give).
Third, continue to pray for our church. Prayer acknowledges our ultimate dependence on God and invites Him to do His will in our lives. Use the summer as a time to renew your commitment to pray for the many people and ministries that make us who we are. Pray for each of the ministry areas of our church, such as children, youth, college, Internationals, and so on. Pray for our major events and activities this summer, such as Vacation Bible School and the youth choir trip. Pray for our mission trips, such as the trip to Haiti and Builders for Christ. Pray for our Bible study leaders and teachers, committees, deacons, pastoral staff, and especially our Pastor Search Committee.
Don’t waste your summer!
— Josh Hall