It's not about the numbers. At least it is not supposed to be. But let's be honest for a moment; numbers do matter to us. No one likes to put effort into something and then have no one show up. If you plan something, ask people to come, setup for people to come and very few people come, that can be very discouraging. I know it certainly can be for me. This is why I am so grateful for the the example of my friend Rob Finizio.
Rob came to me several months ago with a desire to see our church grow in the area of prayer. I have known Rob for years and he and his wonderful wife Michelle have consistently carried a burden on their hearts to see the people of God seek the face of God through prayer. While we pray together as a church body every Sunday during our worship service, I have been eager for us to grow in this area as a church . So after prayer and discussion Robert and I decided to take two steps. One, Rob started putting together prayer teams that would meet before our church service every Sunday to pray for our meeting. Two, Rob started leading a bi-weekly prayer and praise night at the church building for us to be able to have an extended time of enjoying God's presence together. I was grateful for his initiative to seek to take on these leadership responsibilities and have been personally very blessed to be able to participate in these prayer times. However, these thing have not yet really taken off in our church. Participation has been inconsistent and often very low. Simply put, the numbers have not been good. Every Sunday when yet another person forgets that they signed up to pray that week and every Monday night where another light crowd shows up, I ask Robert how he is doing. I know that I would be tempted to be discouraged and want to hit the pause button. However, every time I ask Robert how he is doing he just expresses gratitude for the opportunity to be able to pray. He verbalizes how he isn't concerned about the numbers, but just wants to be faithful to do what he feels God has called him to do. His preparation has remained consistent and his passion unfaded. His example encourages me to want to have the same heart. It really isn't about the numbers. It really is just about serving the Lord.
Last night we had a prayer and praise night and it was only attended by Rob, Michelle, myself, someone who has just recently started coming out to Christ Church, and a first time guest. After the first song of praise, Robert's computer crashed, so we had no more music for the rest of the night. Yet, through the technical difficulties and low participation, Rob lead us with tremendous grace and it was one of the sweetest times of prayer that we have had. The first time guest was not a Christian and after the meeting, Michelle and Robert engaged her with warmth, kindness, compassion and grace. The woman was moved to tears and told us that she felt God speaking to her and knew that she had to come back.
I share this with you, because I want to give you the opportunity to have Robert's example stir you the way that it does me. In life, when we don't see immediate fruit, it can be very easy to just give up. Yet, God doesn't call us to be fruitful. He just calls us to be faithful. I praise God for His work in Robert's life that is teaching me this lesson. Numbers really don't matter when you are simply seeking to serve the only One who truly matters
Let's be willing just to be faithful Christ Church. .
Grace to you!