Monday, March 28, 2011

Searching for Trust

"My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me." John 10:27 NIV

Last week, as I was driving to the church building, I took notice of a field I pass on my way there. There are always a large number of sheep and cows and even a few Emus grazing, but today I noticed something a bit unusual. There was a man crouched down near the corner of the barn and he seemed to be talking to two small spotted lambs near by. They were frozen, bodies tense and ears perked. It instantly became obvious to me that he was probably the farmer and they were his lambs. I have read that sheep grow accustom to their shepherd's voice and that they will come when they hear it. It was clear that these lambs were not yet used to hearing the farmer call them and he was working on introducing himself to them. In time, they will learn that he is there to care for them.

As I drove on, God brought to mind how those of us who are Christians are sheep as well. We know our Shepherd's voice and we know that we can trust Him. But there are many people who walk through the church doors on a Sunday who are just like those lambs. They are curious, they see others trusting Him but they still have a lot of reservations. Its our job, as believers to not only introduce people to Christ, but to show them He is trustworthy. I believe that begins with creating a place where they feel safe and accepted. Even if your church family has long been a welcoming community, we need to continue to find ways to increase that. I know that many of us are very busy on Sundays serving in an area of the church, catching up with friends or perhaps needing to slip out for another obligation, but look for opportunities to meet and welcome new faces. The elders and staff at our church are making great efforts to make that even easier for our congregation, but we still need to take initiative. If your church is doing things “right” then you're going to grow. The challenge will be to make sure those who are searching stay to find the Answer.