It’s Holy Week, meaning most churches are in turbo mode–planning, executing the plans, making more plans, and planning to have more plans. New Vintage Church is doing a lot of this sort of thing, as well. Nevertheless, on this Monday, we might all do well to remember the big picture.
Easter presents unique opportunities for the church, but some are more important than others. Here are three that form the measuring stick of “success” for New Vintage Church:
1. Lift up the Risen Christ. Above all, Easter is about celebrating the resurrected Savior. Some churches miss this, and spend Easter talking about things other than Jesus. For the life of me, I don’t get it. However, I can see some who feel engaging the searchers is a form of worship unto Jesus. Nevertheless, those who show up on Easter are ready to hear about Jesus and expect to hear about Jesus–not marriage tips, for instance. If you feel you must do marriage tips, at least lift up the Lord of marriage in doing so. I believe it’s far better to orient Easter around core Gospel, and the empty tomb. You can count on God to bless any effort to lift up the Son. We’ll be concluding our series on Revelation (though we’ve ‘re-branded’ Easter Sunday), with a message from Revelation 22. The options for every church, however, are virtually limitless.
2. Engage the Searcher. You will have more searchers present this Sunday than any other day of the year. The heart of the Risen Savior is to seek and save what is lost. Be creative, wise, and loving in how you craft your plans to do this. At New Vintage Church, our primary aim in engaging the searcher is to peak their interest enough they come back the following week. It isn’t just to baptize them on Easter after one sermon (though I suppose that would be fine). It’s to get them to begin their search in earnest.
3. Love the Church. Easter, for many, is a time when deep reflection on life and family happens. Kids hunt for Easter eggs, resurrection heightens awareness of recent death in the family, and extended family comes together for brunch. This is a great time to let your pastor heart come forth. To the best of your ability, do all your worrying about logistics until 45 minutes before the assembly begins. Then, it’s about Christ and His people only. If you worry about logistics and miss Christ’s people, you’ve missed it.
I know it may seem difficult to do all three of these at the same time this Sunday. But, as the Risen Savior once said, “Nothing is Impossible with God.” It’s very possible with some intentionality and proper planning.
Sunday, let’s love Christ first, love the Searcher, and love His people.
May the Risen Christ shine brightly through His Church this Sunday!
Anything you’d add to these three? What else might churches do?