Easter Sunday is always a big and significant day in the life of all of our churches. First and foremost, it is a day to celebrate our risen Savior. But, in many cases, we also know that this is a day when people are most likely to attend a church service.
This past Easter Sunday, there were several churches in the New York City area that began weekly worship services for the very first time. There were many churches across the city that celebrated Easter Sunday with their highest attendance, people beginning a relationship with Christ, and making connections within their communities.
We celebrate and rejoice in all that God is doing across New York City. We can see His mighty hand at work in an incredible way.
With all of that said, there is a tricky aspect to Easter Sunday and church planting.
In so many church plant situations, we are looking for any signs of progress and success. There is a tendency to use Easter Sunday as gauge or barometer as to how well the church is doing and performing. It seems to be an opportunity to provide an accurate measurement as to the status of the church plant and how well things are progressing.
While there should be ongoing measurement and evaluations as to the life and health of the church, Easter Sunday should not be the only determination or metric for success.
We have to remember that each person matters and each individual is being pursued by God.
I spoke to one church planter in Queens, who let me know that he invited an individual to come and was celebrating because that one person came.
I talked with another church planter on Long Island who met a person who had been in jail two Sundays before Easter. He invited that individual to come and was celebrating because that one person came.
While we want to and should celebrate the high attendance days and remarkable progress of churches growing, we have to also remember that there is also the celebration “in heaven over one lost sinner who repents (Luke 15:7)."
Each church planter has a difficult task. In addition to proclaiming the truth of the gospel in their communities, they have to determine strategies and measure the effectiveness of those strategies. But, we can never lose sight of the fact that each and every person matters.
Please be praying for each and every church planter and their families who work so diligently and tirelessly to share the love of Jesus with people across the New York City Metropolitan Area.