Thank you and let’s do even better next year

As I shared with you during my message last Sunday, I am very thankful that many of you served in various ways to make this year’s House Church Seminar for Pastors a great success. Without you, this couldn’t have been possible. So, thank you. I pray that God’s abundant blessings will be upon you, your family and work.

God has called us to become a resource church to help other churches that want to learn how to build and restore their churches in the spirit of the New Testament through house church ministry. This is a tremendous blessing and privilege. Not that many churches get to be used by God to be a resource church to help other churches. And as we help and serve other churches, we notice that we get happier and stronger. This is what ministry that is done in the right spirit does in our lives. That’s why we call ministry a tremendous privilege and blessing. And people who have experienced this blessing want to serve more and more. I often see the same shepherds opening up their homes to host and the same members coming out to serve in various ways year after year. It is because they have tasted the joy and blessing of serving during house church seminar. No wonder why Jesus said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35)

Sadly, those who never or rarely serve during the seminar don’t get to experience this blessing and joy Jesus is talking about. Ah, how I wish all the members of New Life experience this joy and blessing of ministry!

Furthermore, some members who don’t serve during the seminar don’t even seem to know that it is important for them to at least come out to church on Sunday to worship when the seminar is being held. Due to what we need to show and teach the seminar participants, we have determined that the week leading up to the second Sunday of March is the best time for the seminar. However, this seminar period is often one week prior to our children’s spring break. In other words, when the seminar ends, the spring break begins. Therefore, not a small number of families take a vacation and go out of town beginning from the weekend when the seminar is still going on. That’s why last Sunday’s worship attendance was tremendously low. It was about 80-100 people lower than the usual.

I was pretty discouraged about this because we have been praying to be a resource church to help other churches and some of these pastors came from very far places to learn from us. But the members weren’t there to host and greet them. You may think that it is fine for you to not show up and go on a vacation because your house church is not hosting anyone and you didn’t sign up to serve. However, all of us are the hosts who need to stay home to host these guests. And this is the most important New Life event through which we could potentially impact so many churches and people’s lives. It would have been so awesome if all of you stayed in Houston during the seminar to pray and intercede for everyone who is involved in serving and come out to church to see even just once what is happening and how God is using our church. And it would have been great if all of you came out to worship service on Sunday earlier than usual to be ready to receive our guests and praise and worship God with them so that their worship experience would have been powerful and joyful.

So, everyone, do your best to serve during the seminar next year so that you will experience the joy and blessing of ministry. And shepherds and wives, do your best to host so that you, but especially your house church members could experience the blessings of serving God’s servants.

And New Life, please don’t forget to come out to church to worship on the Sunday when we have the seminar. We are the hosts and we must be here to welcome our guests. After that you all can go on a vacation thanking God and enjoying your family! 🙂

Thank you and let’s do even better next year!

Your pastor,

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