What is REFOCUS 2021? It is becoming passionate about our mission and taking God-directed actions to see it accomplished. On August 22 we will start a sermon series that will help us understand three things necessary for accomplishing our mission:
1) The proper attitude - it must be one of hope and determination.
2) Faith - trusting that God has and will give us everything we need to accomplish our mission.
3) A strategy - that focuses on inviting people to experience God’s love in our midst and creating an atmosphere that helps people engage in the life of the church.
REFOCUS 2021 is more than a sermon series, it’s in a sense a new beginning for us as a church. We are celebrating what God has done in the past 151 years of the existence of New Guilford and yes, that is something worth celebrating. However, God is not only the God of the past, but also, God of the future. In some ways we need to put the past behind us and not think that a successful and good future can only look like success of the past. Therefore REFOCUS 2021 is also a strategy for moving forward.
In his book Scrappy Church, Thom Rainer identifies three areas of intentional focus and actions that churches just like us engage in to bring growth:
Þ Outward Deluge - A focus on outreach and inviting people to church. This is why I’m inviting you to look at September 19, 2021 as a new start for us. Why September 19? Because September 19 is National Back to Church Sunday. I’m not sure how long this has been a designated Sunday, but I’m thinking at least ten years. It is not something that is being planned just because of the pandemic. Let’s take advantage of this and invite people to church like we never have before.
Þ Being a Welcoming Church - We all know how important first impressions are. The moment a visitor pulls in a parking lot, they can get a sense of whether they are welcomed or not.
Þ Closing the Backdoor - A retired pastor once told me that a congregation will lose on average 40% of its people, that means to just stay even a congregation has to make up that 40%.
In summary, there are basically three parts to REFOCUS 2021. There is the intentional focus on the mission, the sermon series, and the strategy. However, all of this is meaningless if God is not in it. I’m asking you to join me in committing all of this to the Lord through prayer. I will be at the church every Tuesday evening from August 24 through September 14 from 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM praying for God’s leading every step of the way. Come join me! Our refocus begins with keeping our eyes on Him!