I had the joy of being at ECG (Easter People) in Scarborough after Easter and heard some truly shocking statistics. The Methodist church has some 5,500 chapels, one in four of which is growing. These are served by about 500 ministers. We have 209,000 members with about 800,000 coming through our doors a month, but of the 209,000 members there are only 12,500 below the age of 65! This means that unless the situation changes dramatically the Methodist church as we know it will cease to exist in my lifetime.
Mission must be front and centre on our agenda. Seeing people won to Christ is the purpose for the church’s existence on earth. We will worship and fellowship and learn more of God in heaven, but we will no longer be able to bear witness or share our testimony. Jesus said “Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28 v 18-19. We must not wait to share our witness. When we do witness we must always share with genuine love and respect. Now is the day to share our faith. If we are to win people to Christ it will be through friendship, love and invitation.
In May we have a tremendous opportunity to invite people to consider the faith. We are holding our Tent Mission at Banks school field from May 1st to the 4th. There are great guest speakers, and people will have a genuine opportunity to come to faith in Christ. If we will do what we can in inviting people, then God will do what we can not do and touch their lives.
I invite you to come and join me in inviting a friend.
Rev. Kevin Jones