Church Members’ Faces

At our Wednesday evening prayer services, house churches take turns giving presentations. This includes the testimony of one of their members. At a recent service, one of our newer church members mentioned an incident involving me at the end of his testimony.

He was taking our introductory Bible class, The New Life, and was in charge of the class roll call. Class members drop their name tags into a box at the end of class and he checked attendance by looking at the box. One day, there was a slip up and the name tags of those who came to class that day were mixed up with those who didn’t. I separated the tags for him and helped him finish his record keeping. This was only the 2nd or 3rd class, and the fact that I could remember everyone’s faces enough to separate their name tags in such a short period of time seemed to have impressed him.

I make an effort to do this. When classes begin I ask attendees to submit prayer requests related to what they want to get out of the class. I pray over their requests at least once a week. When I pray I try to recall their faces; otherwise it’s hard for me to pray for them in earnest. This helps me learn their faces quicker.

I try to do this not just with Bible class members but with all our church members. I visit house churches with my wife every Friday. Some members are surprised when they find out that I remember not only their names but also some personal things about them. They do not expect this because they feel that our church is too big and that they’re insignificant members.

I pray for our members constantly. During morning prayer, I pray over the family prayer requests everyone submits in the beginning of each year. I also pray over the requests our members write on the commitment cards during Sunday worship services. When I am praying for our members and cannot recall their faces, I consult the pictures in our church directory.

The computerization of our church office has helped a lot with this. All of our members’ pictures are in the computer. When we have visitors on Sunday our greeting ministry team takes their pictures and saves them in our office computer. After I meet visitors, I feed in their personal information to the computer. I pray for these visitors during the following week. If I can’t remember their faces as I’m praying, I can bring them up on my laptop.

Even though I try to hard to remember our members’ names, to my embarrassment I can’t recall their names quickly when I meet them outside of church. I must be getting old.

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