The Ministry of the Pew
When we gather with fellow Christians on the Lord's Day, we are there for two primary reasons: (1) to worship God and (2) to serve one another. What's interesting is that both of these require preparation and intentionality, something that many Christians don't do when they "go to church." Unfortunately, we often go as consumers rather than participants.
Colin Marshall and Tony Payne, authors of The Trellis and The Vine, encourage Christians to be active participants in "The ministry of the pew." Their suggestions are simple, but very helpful in maximizing your time before, during, and after the worship service.
Before the Service
Read the passage in advance
Pray for the gathering
Greet newcomers (act like you are the host)
Think strategically about who you should sit with
During the Service
Sing with gusto (even if you can’t sing)
Help with logistics (if there’s a problem, help fix it)
Don’t be distracted
Be aware of your facial expressions (you may affect others and discourage preachers)
After the Service
Connect newcomers with others
Get newcomers information
Start a conversation about the sermon
Ask someone how they became a Christian
Do you do these things? Which suggestions could you put into practice?
Rather than attempting a radical change that may feel overwhelming and result in frustration, choose a few to implement this Sunday. You will likely find your worship to be more God-centered and your service more others-minded.