Posts Tagged ‘9Marks’
The following advice seems to have tickled a thousand fancies, being all over the shop at the moment. It began life in a seminar reported at the 9Marks Ministries blog. Since I have a deep-rooted need to jump aboard every passing bandwagon, and out of a slavish attachment to the 9Marks blog, and – more seriously – because it is good advice which bears repeating, here – for your delight and delectation – are some things that church members can do to serve Christ in his church on the Lord’s day.
Apart from the always grating assumption that we only go to church once on Sunday (which I have already assaulted by changing a few singulars to plurals), is there anything more that might be added to the list, or any caveats that might be included (I have added a couple)?
Before the services
- Read the passage in advance [if you know it].
- Pray for the gathering.
- Greet newcomers (act like you are the host).
- Think strategically about who you should sit with.
- Arrive early.
During the services
- Sing with gusto (even if you can’t sing) [as part of the congregation, and not apart from or against it].
- Help with logistics (if there’s a problem, help fix it).
- Don’t be distracted.
- Listen carefully.
- Be aware of your facial expressions (you may affect others and discourage preachers).
After the services
- Connect newcomers with others.
- Get newcomers information.
- Start a conversation about the sermon.
- Ask someone how they became a Christian.
- Stay late.
So, anything missing or needing clarification?
While I find the phrase ‘doing church’ a touch repugnant, it is nevertheless the topic of a series of interviews that 9Marks is doing with Steve Timmis of The Crowded House (first three parts here, here and here). Michael McKinley, our intrepid interviewer, asks some good questions about preaching and leadership and membership, which Mr Timmis seeks to answer from the foundation of what he calls “principled pragmatism” (which demands questions about where the balance lies).
Jonathan Leeman has already begun to interact with Steve’s answers on the same blog, and is making some good points.
Those who have read Total Church without critical engagement will find following this interview a useful exercise.
Update: the fourth and final instalment.