Starting on August 20, 2017, BSM North will no longer be hosting Sunday morning youth services. But why?
I'm glad you asked.
For a better part of American history and culture, the church building has been a huge lifeline of Christian activity. The Christian ritual has been firm and repetitive: Go to your desired church service, sit in your desired seat (or pew), listen to someone preach, sing a few songs, shake a few hands, go home, live your normal life, and then repeat next Sunday.
But the "Christian life" we see in Scripture is a far cry from today's religious systems. You see, in days of old, the lifeline of Christian activity thrived outside of the 4 walls of a building. Believers ate meals together. They prayed together. They worshiped together. They ministered to each other. They encouraged one another. They served each other.
All outside the walls of a religious building.
Then, somewhere along the lines, our culture shifted. Out of necessity, demand, common sense, habit, or comfort, Christian activity slowly became centered around a church building. Suddenly, the arms and hands, and legs and feet of the Body that were once thriving in neighborhoods, at family dinner tables, and on city streets grew stiff during the week. Truth is, we so often wait for the church doors to open on Sunday morning so we can continue our spiritual activities.
But our desire at BSM North is to return the arms and hands, and legs and feet back to the neighborhoods. Back to the family dinner tables. Back to the city streets. We have a growing zeal to see the Church thrive outside the church building.
We want students to be doing less church activity, and more Kingdom activity.
For us at BSM North, we've realized that our long-standing behavior has been telling people to "Come to us. Come to our service. Come to our event. Come to our class." But you can't impact a city while locked away in a class room. And so we've felt a large stirring from the Lord compelling us to declare that we would be a people who would "Go to them. Go to their neighborhood. Go to their streets. Go to their homes."
Now, there may be some concern from people who might cry out, "But what about the part where we're called to 'not neglect to gather together..'?" [Hebrews 10:25] Thankfully, we're not neglecting to gather together! Along with the reality that believers are commanded to meet together in a community setting, we truly do believe that there is so much beauty, value, and life to be had when we gather together, pray for each other, minister to each other, worship together, serve each other, and encourage each other inside the walls of a church building!
And it's because of this importance, that our Wednesday Night service, SUMMIT, will continue to be a time of worship, encouragement, teaching, and Life Groups! But these nights will serve as a catalyst to "go." We will charge our leaders, students, and Life Groups to be more involved in the community. More involved at their dinner tables. More involved in their school hallways. More involved in the streets.
So now what?
Without Middle School and High School services on Sunday Morning in the Fall, what is there for students to do? The answer is quite simple:
Serve & Worship.
Students of all ages can sign up to be a part of our SERVE Team, and help serve the people of Beltway Park on Sunday Mornings and Thursday Nights. From Children's Ministry, to helping people find a seat, to serving in a kiosk between services, everyone has a place to serve! Use this opportunity to jump in with us!
We also encourage our students to come join us in our main Worship Center on Sunday mornings. Middle School students will be encouraged to come and worship alongside other Middle Schoolers, and High School students will be encouraged to come and worship alongside other High Schoolers. Or perhaps even more powerful, we encourage our students to worship together with their family.
As we journey into this new season, we ask for your prayers. Pray that our leaders, students, and Life Groups would be bold as they begin to step into the streets of our city, love our people, and declare the name of Jesus.
May we be known as followers of Jesus who thrive outside the walls of a church building. May we be known as followers of Jesus who "go to them."
May we dare to follow Jesus outside our walls.