Back to Church Sunday
By Pastor Tom Anderson
National Back to Church Sunday began in 2009 as church attendance in America was declining and church leaders began to look for ways to involve their congregations in reaching out and inviting friends, neighbors and coworkers to come back to, or try church for the first time. It is a day set aside for churches across America to invite their community to a Bible-based church, whether for the first time or as a returning member.
Our website carries this warm invitation: Come Grow with us, and live beyond ordinary! People will ask you why “Thrive” Church? Jesus said, “I have come that you may have life and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10) To Thrive is to live the life Jesus came to give us and it’s our mission to share it with everyone. There’s so much more to life than being a consumer and pursuing success. A thriving life is full of the faith, hope and love of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world.
September 17 is Back to Church Sunday. Imagine the worship center full of 100 people at 9:30 AM, another 100 people at 11 AM and still another 100 people viewing online! All things are possible with God! Pray for a miracle. Invite friends, relatives, acquaintances and neighbors. Step forward to be a row captain–someone who brings 10 people to church–enough to fill a row of seats.
Make a list of people to invite. Pray for them. Ask them face to face, text, call or email them. If you don’t know anyone who does not go to church, start meeting some new people. Introduce yourself to your bank teller, the grocery store clerk, a new neighbor or a new hire in your workplace. Join a gym, a club or a civic group. Put yourself in a place where you can mix with non-church goers. Build relationships and then invite, invite, invite.
A special sermon series will launch in September called Rooted. The week before back to church Sunday, we’ll look at Jesus’ Great Commission in Matthew 28:19-20 and consider how God’s church is Rooted in Sharing. On Back to Church Sunday the message is on being Rooted in Faith. We’ll hear how a life built on Jesus overflows with purpose and meaning. The follow up Sundays will be: 1) Rooted in Prayer and Study and 2) Rooted in Community. It’s geared to demonstrate the value of having Christian faith and being part of a church.
The Rooted series is a strong message to the unchurched–but you won’t want to miss it either. There’s no better time to bring your seeking and inquiring friends to Thrive Church. These Sundays are going to be designed just for them. We’ll be promoting our Discover the Christian Life Class on September 24 as well as our Thrive Groups. There’s no better time at Thrive to connect, grow and serve than the events surrounding Back to Church Sunday!