Sometimes it can be hard to serve when we don’t feel like our service is very effective or important. We want to feel like, if we are doing something for the Lord, that our service is appreciated, and the value is seen. I can understand this being the thought process when the Mercy Hill leadership calls for us to serve the church by simply switching services.
Does this type of service really have that much of an impact?
Actually, it can have an eternal impact. At Mercy Hill, we value our college students tremendously. We value their energy, their curiosity, and their future. We know that college students, when shaped by the Gospel, can be some of the most effective culture changers on their campus, in our society, and in the world. Imagine if just one college student gets to hear the Gospel and through that her life is radically transformed by Jesus such that every decision she made for the rest of her college days was made to bring that Gospel to bear on the world. There can be changes in major, career, and places of living (domestic or international) all for the sake of Jesus’ glory among the nations. This is what we at Mercy Hill desire, but we know that most unengaged college students will look for any way to get out of responsibility.
Imagine if we had no seat for them one Sunday. Would they come back?
The church is also a place where broken people come looking for answers. They come for help in hard times and wisdom in times of crisis. Single mothers desperate for help, divorcees wondering if they’ll ever be whole again, people that were just laid off from their jobs desperate to know if there is something more to life besides the meaning that work provides—all of these people in a humbled position that need to hear that through the Gospel Jesus offers them love, salvation, and rest. But, many of these people are let down by the people in their life and are tired of it.
So, what if they came on Sunday and we had to tell them that there was no place to sit? Would they come back?
In the weeks to come, as we are waiting for the Clifton campus to launch, around 400 college students will be making their way back to Mercy Hill (some for the first time). People that have been crushed by this fractured and broken world will be coming and looking for light in the darkness—rest for their souls. These groups of people are much more likely to come to one of our morning services because that is what they are used to traditionally. Yet, statistics show that when a room is near 80% full, people tend to feel as if there really isn’t room for them, and right now, we are already pretty close to that mark in both of our morning services.
So, in this intermediary period, we are going to be holding a 12:30pm service for two weeks (August 21 and August 28) at Regional Road. This is an opportunity to serve the people of Greensboro. Your very act of simply switching the time you attend could have kingdom consequences as an open seat for a thirsty soul can lead to a change in the very essence of that individual’s life and mission. So, sleep-in a little bit or eat breakfast and an early lunch with your family. Your serving Mercy Hill in this way matters and let’s pray that God would see fit to bless it.
-Alex Nolette (Equip Associate)