Many of our Gospel Teams have this week been thinking through the third prong of our SNAC vision which is ‘serving together’. Jesus himself came to serve and not to be served, giving his life as a ransom for many (Mark 10:45). In response, his followers are called to serve one another. Our Gospel Teams got very practical about what this looks like over the past week. Many of our Gospel Teams have this week been thinking through the third prong of our SNAC vision which is ‘serving together’. Jesus himself came to serve and not to be served, giving his life as a ransom for many (Mark 10:45). In response, his followers are called to serve one another. Our Gospel Teams got very practical about what this looks like over the past week.
There are lots of ways Christians can serve together but I thought I would focus in upon ten ways to serve on a Sunday that aren’t on your typical church roster. So here we go:
1. Come to church with the expectation of serving others. A church is the gathering of Christ’s people. We come together to build one another up in Jesus through the Word, prayer and fellowship. When we gather we all have a part to play in building up our local body of Christ (Ephesians 4). So come to church ready to do that!
2. Pray for the Sunday meeting before you go along. Ask God to build up his people on that particular day. Pray for all the elements of the service and that each part would contribute to growing your brothers and sisters in Christ and glorifying God.
3. Cultivate a love for going to church. If we think of church as an obligation it is 100% certain to feel that way every time we go. Instead, be the person who is excited for the next gathering of God’s people. Be the person looking forward to serving and encouraging others and who serves their church by cultivating a love for church that is catching.
4. Turn up early. Leave late. The best way to get to know people and to have opportunities to serve them is to be available! Plan to be at church well before it starts and to leave well after it ends so that you can spend that time serving people. Often new visitors come early so you can chat to them before church and church members stay late so you can chat to them after as well!
5. Sit with someone you don’t know well. We humans are such creatures of habit that we can find ourselves always sitting in the same seat with the same people around us each week. Why not try sitting somewhere completely different? Pick someone you don’t know very well and take the chance to meet and encourage them!
6. Look out for visitors. It’s great to be able to catch up with friends at church. It’s also great that Christ gave us church for Christians. However, we are not a ‘closed’ community but we are always to welcome in new people to our church family. Sometimes that simply means deciding to say hello to someone you don’t know before catching up with those you do. If you follow point 4 there will be time for both things!
7. Listen to the sermon. We all know the temptation when the preacher gets up to speak, to think – great, I have 25 minutes to write my shopping list; or plan my afternoon; or go on a brain snooze. Instead, be ready to hear from God’s Word; listen to the challenges and evaluate what is being said against the Scriptures. You’d be surprised how easy it is for a preacher to tell who is engaged and who is not!
8. Talk about the sermon afterwards (Requires 4 & 7). Find at least one person after church to talk to about what in God’s Word encouraged you.
9. If you see something that needs doing, do it! Just because you aren’t the rostered welcomer or dish washer doesn’t mean you can’t do the job. Jump in and help out! Ask those who are doing things if they need a hand. Like in a family, many hands make light work.
10. Make a post-church plan. Church life doesn’t end as you drive out of the parking lot. As you leave church make a mental note or jot down in your diary something you want to do this week to serve your church. Perhaps you want to discuss the sermon applications with someone at church who can keep you accountable. Perhaps there is a person you need to call because they weren’t at church. Perhaps you met a person you didn’t know and so you want to meet them for a coffee. Perhaps it is chatting about church with your household. Whatever it is: go home with a plan for the week having met with your church family that day.
We serve together because Christ first served us. I’ve listed 10 ideas to serve just on a Sunday at church – I’m sure you can come up with many more. I’ll leave it to you!