Each week, I want to share something I appreciate about my community of faith, the Belton Church of Christ located in Belton, TX. Each week, I will highlight one “bright spot” in my congregation.
Every month we have a membership orientation called NEXT STEP where people come to us who are interested in joining our congregation. I enjoy leading NEXT STEP because I get to be in a room with people and let them know who we are as a church, what we believe, and how to engage with us in ministry.
This morning was a special NEXT STEP gathering. There were 7 families represented and we started sharing our stories. I heard phrases like, “I haven’t been close to God, but I want to make it right,” and “I have been in and out of church my whole life but now I want to come and stay.” Another new friend said, “I have been away from God and the Church, but I want to raise my children here and be a part of this church.” Another family said, “We are going to have a baby in September.”
I was so blessed to listen to these stories and to get a glimpse into their lives. It was so refreshing. It also is amazing to hear what interests people who are new to the church culture. I was told today by a woman that she wished I would preach longer because it is so engaging that she isn’t ready for the sermons to be done. I share this not to point to my effectiveness of my preaching, but to show how different people respond differently! (I told her that she and I were going to get along just fine, by the way.)
After our session was done, I talked with some people from NEXT STEP and they expressed their interest in being baptized into Jesus. Although these people had been churched, they never had taken the step to be immersed. They were waiting to have a church family in which to belong. I am excited about further sharing Jesus with them.
I appreciate my church because it is normal for us to have God-seeking people come to us because they believe that they will be able to grow close to God with us. This is a blessing and I take their trust seriously.
Does your congregation have a clear process by which people can become part of your body?