The average attendance on our Sunday nights at Legacy for the 21 weeks from January to May was 349. And maybe (from what I’ve heard, remember, I’ve only been here for less than a month) nearly half of that number were not in the worship center with everyone else. They were up in the Attic, our youth facility, teenagers and adults, worshipping with the Youth Group.
We’re making a push this summer to reunite our church family on Sunday nights. A letter went out to all 556 family units last week, inviting everyone to come together on Sunday evenings for a time of worship and fellowship. And the response to what happened last Sunday night has been overwhelming! The place was packed with an official count of 440. There was hardly an empty seat. There was a “Sunday Morning” energy and excitement in the air that had us grinning from ear to ear. And it seems that everyone there was inspired by the beautiful singing, uplifted by the Scripture reading, and moved by the prayers. I’ve received emails, phone calls, and pats on the back all week. People who had not been to a Sunday night assembly in months were encouraged. Those who only come sporadically have vowed to never miss again.
I’d like to take credit for it. I’d like to say it was me. (This honeymoon period is really nice, by the way.)
But it’s our God.
Something special happens when ALL of God’s people come together to pay honor and glory to him. Something significant always happens when the ENTIRE family of faith gets together—young & old, men & women, babies & teenagers & parents & grandparents & great-grandparents—to praise our Father.
See, when we’re doing our own thing, we’re doing our own thing. And there’s nothing wrong with that. There’s certainly a time to get together with your own peer group and your own age group and your own economic group to worship and study and fellowship. And maybe Sunday night is a good time for that. I don’t know. But I think too much of that and too little of ALL OF US together can inadvertently foster feelings across the age groups of “if it doesn’t speak to me and it’s not planned with me in mind and if it’s not geared toward me and my group and serving my needs, I’ll go somewhere else. I’ll do something with my group that we’ll get something out of.”
Again, I think there is a time for that. But look at us now. We have two services on Sunday mornings, separate Bible classes on Wednesdays, and until last week, separate worship services on Sunday evenings. There was never a time when the ENTIRE church family was together in the same room doing the same thing together at the same time. Sunday night is our only opportunity to do that. And we were all moved by the experience.
A family is only a family when the members of that family give and sacrifice for each other. The more we’re together, the more family we become. I don’t think it’s a generational thing. Older people blame the younger people and younger people blame the older people for whatever they perceive is wrong with the church. But it’s always surprising to me that when everybody sits down at a table together and just talks, we all think alike on just about everything. We just don’t realize it because we don’t do as much together as we used to. The more we’re together, the more we’ll see and feel and experience just how alike we all are. Our differences become small and insignificant when I’m sitting right next to you and singing with you to our God. Whatever our differences in age, background, race, or economics, they disappear in our worship.
Our Life Groups will begin meeting again once school starts in September. And I’m convinced that those small groups are wonderful for forming meaningful relationships with brothers and sisters in Christ. I’m excited about the evangelism potential and the disciple-making possibilities of a reworked and rebooted Life Groups Ministry. Let’s do it.
But this summer, I hope to see you with us at the building on Sunday nights.
OK, I’ve spent so much time and space on this, I have little room to go on and on about #77 in our countdown to football season. The greatest player to ever wear the #77 is the Galloping Ghost, Harold “Red” Grange.
Grange the very first professional football “star,” drew enormous crowds for the Chicago Bears in the 1920s. One could argue that, without Grange, the NFL never would have gotten off the ground. He made it. He was what people paid to see. He single-handedly beat the Giants in the very first ever NFL Championship Game. A charter member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Red Grange is the best player to ever wear #77.