Sunday Services at 10:00am
1155 Silas Deane Highway, Wethersfield
“You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. The entire law is summed up in a single command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” (Galatians 5:13-14)
Love, as DC Talk put it so many years ago, is a verb. Loving your neighbor, therefore, is not primarily a matter of emotion, but shows itself in practical ways. With that in mind, consider these eight practical ways that you can love your neighbor on Sunday morning at NewLife, or at whatever church you attend:
1) Leave the closest parking spots for guests, the elderly, and parents of young children – Every Sunday, I pull in about 9:30, right about the same time as the Hoods, and we park right next to each other on the far side of the church. I smile because I know they understand this simple act of hospitality: if you are able to walk freely, and don’t have a baby or toddler in tow, then don’t take the prime parking spots in the front of the church. Leave them for guests, the elderly, and parents of young children, and don’t be afraid to walk a little bit.
2) Sit with someone who is new or you don’t recognize – Why do you choose the seat you do? Are you looking for your friends? Looking to sit by yourself? Or just sitting in the same seat out of habit? Why not instead, ask God to give you His eyes as you enter the sanctuary, and then choose to sit with someone new, someone you don’t know well, or maybe even someone who looks like they could use some company.
3) Ask someone to tell you about themself – Whether it’s during the mid-service dismissal of the kids, or after the service ends, try to get beyond the surface level with someone and hear how they are really doing, or to hear more of someone’s story.
4) Give someone a hug (or a handshake, or a bro-hug); tell them you are glad to see them – Not everyone is a hugger, of course, but most people appreciate knowing that someone is happy to see them.
5) Pay attention to who is not there and reach out to someone to see how they are – The flip side, of course, is that most people also appreciate knowing that they are missed. At some point during the service, pay attention to who is not there, and make a point to give that person a call or drop them an email to see how they are doing.
6) Serve somewhere once a month – A good expectation is that if you consider NewLife your home, then serve somewhere on a Sunday morning on average once every month. Whether that is in the nursery, teaching Sunday school, as a greeter, with the coffee ministry, on the worship or audio/visual team, or as a prayer minister up front, there is a role for you. If you’re not sure where to serve, our biggest need right now is in the nursery.
7) Give financially – If your heart is to see our church become all that God desires our church to be, and to see God transform lives through our church, then give regularly and sacrificially to the work of God at NewLife.
8) Show up on time – Yes, even this matters. Show up in time to prepare your heart for worship and to hear the Word. Your brothers and sisters in Christ need your prayers and holiness. Here’s a suggestion: if you find yourself regularly arriving 5 minutes late, start leaving your house 5 minutes earlier.
Jesus said that the world would know that we are His disciples by how we love one another. As important as powerful sermons, moving worship, and comfortable chairs are, what matters most is that we love each other. Let the love of Christ, displayed in the members of our church, be the hallmark of NewLife.
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