(Blogger’s note: this is the first of two posts today … expect the second between 9 and 10pm Pacific time)
I mentioned in my New Year’s day post that I would be going on a Congregational Journey, beginning today. I stated my reasons why, but didn’t go much into how I’d actually go about it. Oops — my bad. So, three days late and a dollar short, here are a few clarifying details:
* I’ll be showing up to the meetings 10-15 minutes before they’re scheduled to start, so I have time to actually talk to people, get settled in and pick up whatever paperwork is available (bulletin, visitor’s card, etc.) At three of the twelve congregations, they have adult Sunday school before the meeting, so I’ll be there for that too.
* I won’t play wallflower (admittedly, my usual habit) — I’ll talk to people, answer their questions, ask questions if I have any, and generally be more sociable than I usually am around strangers. If anyone asks what I’m doing there, I’ll tell them right off. (I’ll probably even tell them I’m going to blog about it. Not sure if that’s wise, but I know I’ll get some great reactions, ha ha.)
* I’m dressing what is usually called “business casual” — slacks, button-down shirt, shoes with laces. Pretty much how I dress if I’m planning to leave the house, regardless of day of the week. Some people are really bothered by folks wearing ties at church, and I don’t want to annoy them. (Besides, when you’re 50 pounds overweight, ties are really uncomfortable.) But I’m not going to look like a homeless person either.
* When the offering basket/plate/former KFC bucket comes around, I’ll put in $20. I won’t make a big deal out of it, just fold the bill up and drop it in.
* I’ll be looking for three things, what I call the three signs of a good congregation: is God’s Word preached, is God’s Spiritclearly moving, and are God’s people acting like Jesus or like the world? Other things might be of interest, but those three are the most important.
We all on the same page now? Okay — details on Visit #1 later today …