Are you refreshing to the Church?

Many people see involvement in the local church as an opportunity to be fed. We ask how the church might serve us, rather than asking how we might serve the church. A few years ago, Jason Helopoulos posted an article about how we might be refreshing to the local church. In this way, we might live up to the encouragement that Paul gave to Philemon in the letter bearing his name.

"For I have derived much joy and comfort from your love, my brother, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you." (Philemon 7)

Wouldn't be incredible if we were known by our love and by the way that we bring joy, comfort, and refreshment to our brothers and sisters in Christ?

Here is a sample of the variety of ways Jason highlighted that we can be refreshing to the church:

  • Visit the widows and shut-ins of your church. Take an afternoon and visit three or four. Sit, talk, listen, and be willing to look at their photo albums—all of them (1 Timothy 5:3)!
  • Show up each Sunday morning with a mental list of three or four people that you are going to find and minister to (Philippians 2:4). Many of us walk into church with an attitude of, “I wonder who will minister to me today.” Nothing can be as drastically encouraging to a local church’s membership than a people united in the understanding that they are there to serve and love one another.
  • Be a Monday morning encourager instead of a Monday morning critic by sending your pastor an email detailing what you appreciated about his Sunday sermon.
  • Don’t rush out of church on Sunday mornings. Be one of the last to leave because you are taking the time to talk with everyone you can (this will be hard for the introvert—but some of the most engaging and refreshing people I have served with are introverts. They wear themselves out on Sunday morning). The football games and lunch will be there fifteen or thirty minutes later.
  • Seek out those visiting the church, get to know them, and introduce them to others. Find connections and be a networker to the glory of God.
  • Write thank you notes to volunteers in the church. Write and mail anonymous encouragement notes to members of the congregation. Why are we so hesitant to pass out encouragement? We can never encourage others too much (1 Thessalonians 5:11).

You can find the original article and the complete list of suggestions HERE.