“Praising God and enjoying the favor of all people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”- Acts 2:47
I recently woke up in the middle of the night and the clock read 2:47 am. Something about that time caused the heaviness in my eyes to give way to a newfound hope in my heart. As I laid in bed, I wondered what was different about this middle of the night wake-up call? Then it occurred to me that the time on the clock was a reminder of the momentous and multiplying work that God did in the Early Church as seen in Acts 2.
The book of Acts provides us with the marvelous account of the birth and growth of the Church. As the promise of the Holy Spirit was received by Jesus’ disciples, they moved out with boldness, declaring the message of Christ’s death and resurrection, accompanied by signs and wonders. The results were staggering to say the least: people’s lives were changed, the disciples received incredible favor, the Word of God spread, and the Church added to it daily those who by faith received salvation.
Acts 5:14- “Nevertheless, more and more men and women believed in the Lord and were added to their number.”
Acts 6:7- “So the Word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly…”
Acts 12:24- “But the Word of God continued to spread and flourish.”
Acts 19:20- “In this way the Word of the Lord spread widely and grew in power.”
In the same way, God commanded Adam and Eve to “Be fruitful and increase in number.” (Genesis 1:28), the Early Church was ALIVE and ABUNDANT, just as He planned it. As we are just weeks away from EASTER (April 21) and our move to TWO SERVICES (9 and 10:45 am), His plan is for today. As I woke up the other night to this reality of increase, I want to signal us to what is possible as we seek the Lord, serve Him with gladness, and share His love to everyone, everywhere. God is the One who makes things grow (to His glory), and His plan is that we would be fruitful and increase.
As we move through this spring season of NEWNESS let me awaken us to how we will see God’s heart and plan of people coming into His kingdom and family, as we partner together. Here are some keys to seeing multiplication as we move to two services:
1) We want to MAKE ROOM for more people-
We are creating more space and options for people to worship with us on Sunday. By moving to two services, people who have work or other obligations will be able to attend the earlier service. We will also be able to welcome new families by creating more space in our kids’ classrooms, which are often reaching capacity.
2) We need to adapt an ATTEND 1 + SERVE 1 approach-
With two services we will need more hands to serve and care for people. We need more ushers and greeters, worship team members, teachers and assistants for the Kids’ Ministries, and audio/video tech volunteers. For those who aren’t currently serving on Sunday morning, it’s time to find a place. For those serving already, please prayerfully consider increasing the number of weeks you serve. Remember, with two services you will now be able to worship and receive the teaching of the Word every week. This will bring an increase of refreshing and strength.
3) Let’s cultivate an INVITING SPIRIT-
One of the keys to moving to two services is each of us reaching out to invite people to church. Begin to pray even now about who you know who needs Jesus and/or who does not currently have a church home. Ask God to give you opportunities to share your faith and invite people. When you are at service and the seat next to you is empty, say a “ten second prayer” asking God to fill that space next Sunday!
Even as Sunday is known as “The Lord’s Day”, let’s make it His with a new level of devotion and dedication, so all His children would experience blessing and all His creation would know His love and glory!