Pastoral Perspectives

Looking Out for One Another!

At the recent Extraordinary Congregational Meeting on 17 November, the leadership of True Way announced that there would be no more marking of attendance at Sunday worship services.  To some, it may be a great relief but to others who have the habit of marking attendance, it may take some adjustments to this new system.  To still others, it may come as a shock or a surprise!  It is a new start and perhaps, a good start!  The doing-away-with of marking attendance has its valid reason as it does not serve its purpose intended for.  This does not mean that the leadership does not care for the flock but it does mean that we want to be more intentional about caring for the flock.

What shall the worshippers do?  The regular worshippers and communicant members play an important part in making True Way a warm and welcoming environment for all who come to worship each Sunday.  The leaders and the Care Group members also play a vital role in reaching out to the people.  We are a community of believers, the body of Christ, worshipping God together and fellowshipping with one another for the edification of the Body.  It involves the heart and the determination on the part of everyone.  I am reminded of Romans 12: 9-13.  We need to intentionally look out for one another each Sunday.  This must begin with love flowing out from the heart.  In Romans 12: 9a, “Love must be sincere” (NIV) or “Let love be genuine” (ESV).  Similarly, in Romans 12: 10a, “Love one another with brotherly affection.”  How do we have sincere love for one another?  How do we love one another with brotherly affection?  Our love for God is demonstrated by our love for one another.  When you notice someone is not at the Sunday service last Sunday, what should you do?  One thing which you can do is to let the leadership knows so that they can find out and arrange for a visit.  The obvious thing which you as a worshipper can do is to call him or her or even send a text message to them.  A call or a message meant a lot to me!   I believe it does to each one of us.  You may write something like this in your text message: “I notice that you are not at the Sunday service last Sunday.  May I know how I can pray for you? or Is there anything which I can pray for you?”  A message like this gives the person who receives it the evidence of the love that is genuine/sincere!  Usually, you would get a response from them.  Even if you do not receive a response, do not be disheartened!  You still can uphold them in your personal prayers.  If the person responds with a prayer request, remember to pray and keep it confidential unless you have their permission to share it with the church or with others.  Another way of showing love is making a phone call which, to me, is more personal compared to sending a text message.  This depends on each individual’s preference.  I am used to sending text messages to people through What’sApp.  I have even set up a group What’sApp named “Be Encouraged!”  Think practically how you might want to reach out to the worshippers each Sunday.  “Looking out for one another” shows that we care for that person who is in need.

We can all do our part by making True Way a warm and welcoming environment for everyone who worships with us each Sunday, from the youngest to the oldest, no one being left out!  We need one another as we are all part of the Body of Christ.  Last Sunday, I did not see some of my Care Group members.  So, I decided to send text messages to them.  I was glad to receive their replies and knew how they have been as a result of this.  If you belong to a Care Group, you may also do likewise.  Beside this, you may want to invite those who are not in a Care Group to join your Care Group’s Christmas celebration.  This is what Body Life is all about!  We love and we care and we look out for you out there in each Sunday service!

So, let us “practice hospitality” (Romans 12: 13b NIV) here at True Way, looking to the interests of others rather than our own.  “Looking out for one another” begins in our heart and in our life.  Let us make it our culture here to readily look out for one another, meeting the needs of each one, reaching out to each one with the love of Jesus Christ our Lord!  All this we do, not for our sake but for the sake of Christ, and for the glory of our Lord and our King.  Amen.