We are family. . . . .

Today, I had a father and sons day with my 2 boys. Even though I wanted to make this day about my boys, my youngest son Jordan was bound and determined to make it about me. All he wanted to do is anything that would please me. So, after he helped me wash and shine up the Mustang, I let him ride in the front seat of the car for the first time ever. I was amazed as I watched him fasten his seat belt right away and then as we pulled out of the driveway and onto the street, he watched every little thing that I did.

I got a fresh perspective today from watching Jordan. He was so excited to get the chance to ride in the front seat. He watched my feet as they pressed on the gas and brake pedals, he touched every knob and button that he could reach and had a big smile on his face the entire time. Seeing him enjoy himself brought such joy to my heart but I also noticed that
as he was watching every move I made, it was all somewhat strange and foreign to him as he was a “FIRST TIME VISITOR” to my “domain” called the front seat.

As he was sitting in great clips getting his hair cut, I began to think of my church and how this applied to people trying our church for the first time. When someone visits a church for the first time, you really don’t know what is going through their mind. Do they like the music or the preaching? Is it their first time in a Pentecostal church or even first ever in any church? Are they excited, nervous confused or lonely?

It is our job as brothers and sisters in Christ to embrace the moment and go out of our way to make them feel welcome. Now, the welcome should be more than just a quick handshake that is usually done out of habit. There are many, many people in Myrtle Beach
that have come here and have NO FAMILY here and a church family may be the only family they will ever have while they live here. We need to get to know them better by inviting them to do things with us and get to know them on a more personal level.

The welcome should last longer than the initial “hello”. Just as I illustrated above with the story about my son, people trying a church for the first time will have a level of excitement
and anticipation as they watch everything that we say and do. The first impression is so important as they sit in our “front seat” and try to get a feel for how we do things. So buckle up and get ready as the Lord will being putting many of these first time church visitors sitting right next to us.

Let’s keep them safe and help them on their journey from the first handshake until the Lord returns.

submitted by Tim bishop


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