Over the past few weeks I have been bombarded with reminders that God is at work all over the place. Last night, I watched video of a church in North Carolina who has baptized about 2,000 people over the last 2 weekends. My heart swelled and eyes watered seeing the exhilhiration on people’s faces as they emerged from the water knowing they just publicly proclaimed that they were now God’s child. I’d also come across a simple tweet by another pastor that said “found people find people”. Both of these thing have me thinking “what am I doing to find people where they are at?” Do I care enough about the salvation of other people to begin a relationship with the person across the street, meeting them where they are at instead of just inviting them to a church service and making them come to where I am?
In conversations that I have with student pastors, one thing I ask them is “what are you intentionally doing to minister to the lost kids in town?” The answers I get have been really eye-opening. So many think that having their normal Wednesday night service and having their youth group students invite friends is all the outreach needed. Others go another step and have after-school programs at the church, or dodgeball games at the church, or 5th quarters at the church. All of things are great for what they are…I really do love them all. But I think we’ve missed the boat. We aren’t really meeting people where they are at. Once again, we are asking them to come to us. This is NOT what Jesus asked us to do, nor is it the example that He set for us. I can’t recall anywhere in the gospels where Jesus asked people to come to the temple so He could begin a relationship with them and tell them more about Himself. Jesus went to people’s homes, met them on the street, in trees, on rooftops to meet their needs. Where is the rooftop you need to go to?
We all need to be more intentional about starting relationships with “the lost”. In my reading today, I came across this sentence: ”Seek opportunities to be there when unbelievers need help”. I want to be a person who does just that. Would you join me in finding ways to meet people where they are at?