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Posted: July 22
Someone asked why we were doing Friday Nights Out. Here is a simple response: Why are we doing Friday Nights Out? We have been talking about what it means to ‘go’ and be the church for almost 18 months, and while we are getting ready to move on to talk about other aspects of our faith in the months to come, we will never diverge from our calling by Jesus to ‘go.’ When a church is brought up and led by individuals, and all the talking is done by individuals and individuals do all the programming and a smaller group of individuals helps to do the basic work included with that effort, a lot of people get left out of the mix, and many people feel as if their part isn’t one worth playing. In short, a lack of participation creates a lack of ownership which in turn makes people feel like their faith isn’t something that –needs- to be lived out. It is something we can mentally acknowledge, but we don’t need to -do- anything in particular to live it out beyond our belief. So, to help combat that issue, we introduce Friday Nights Out, an event that doesn’t require a lot of intense work, but rather causes us to shift out of our comfort zones and personally engage with people on the relational level. As a church, we cannot, and should not expect people to just show up here and become convinced of Christ with little to no effort on our part. Instead, following along with what Jesus says, holding His Word as our highest authority, we find that we have all, each of us, been commissioned to do this work. It doesn’t belong to only the paid staff, elders or deacons. It is the shared responsibility of us all. Anything less than that is a short-selling of the commission that Jesus gave us and a shrugging off of our responsibility and a denial of the truth of Scripture. Friday Nights Out requires us to: a.) Invite people to come, b.) Engage with people who do come more than it requires us to work and toil in a ‘sweat equity’ type service project. As we sit around tables, sharing a meal, or playing a game of corn hole, or a game of Uno, we engage with people on a heart level, a relational level, and that: 1.) Grows our own confidence to live this out away from the church campus 2.) Creates a desire and an inquisitiveness inside them to come see what this is all about 3.) Lets them see that we are real people with real struggles who are following after our very real, very personal Savior Friday Nights Out is not about being busy. Friday Nights Out is about meeting people where they are, and engaging with them for the sake of Christ, and in His Name. It is a low-intensity evening, meant for fun and conversation. You may find yourself standing around and just chatting with people you are meeting for the first time, and in doing that, you will be doing exactly what needs to be done. You may not feel like you have a ‘job’ to do, but in spending time with people, you are doing just what needs to be done. So come, have fun, make some popcorn, serve some tea, share a meal and invite people to come see who Christ is... That‘s what really matters after all.