While at Southside Christian Church I closed every service by challenging people to remember who they are and to remember why we’re here and that our purpose is people.
As I was transitioning from Southside to a new ministry I was intrigued–and encouraged–to hear testimonies of how this weekly challenge impacted some of the people at Southside. Recently, one of the young men who attends Southside, Clayton Wheeler, reflected in his My Space blog about the importance of making our purpose people. I think he lays out the challenge in a clear, understandable, and effective way. Let me share an excerpt with you . . .
Arron Chambers, Teaching pastor of the contemporary service at Christ’s Church Mandarin, when he was the Senior Minister at Southside Christian Church in Orlando, would always end the service like this, remember two things remember who you are and remember why were here our purpose is people. Our PURPOSE is PEOPLE, now here are two very strong P words that when put together can make such a difference, I mean what would the church look like if that was it’s purpose, I think it would be pretty incredible myself and it would look a lot like the first century church, now they had their problems too, but it was always about people and reaching the lost, as well as those who may be hurting in the church already. I think this is what Jesus had in mind because he was always talking and listening to people, I mean why did he raise all those people from the dead or perform all those miracles? It was so that PEOPLE may believe and come to know him, even when his own disciples told the children or prostitutes to go away, Jesus wanted to be with them, now what the disciples did not know was that Jesus was giving an example for what he wanted his church to be, it’s not the me church, our purpose is not ME, our PURPOSE because it was Jesus’ PURPOSE is PEOPLE, you can’t have one without the other.
A lot of People have done great things because they had a purpose. Bob Stacy, a professor at Ozark Christian back in the sixties, decided that there needed to be a ministry designed just for teens, and that is how Christ in Youth was founded. You see Bob Stacy had a Purpose: to bring students closer to Christ, and not only teens, but now even Middle School, College, and upper elementary. You see the Purpose is still there and it continues to spread, because one man had a purpose and his PURPOSE was PEOPLE, to bring PEOPLE closer to Christ. My challenge to you in this blog is to be the church that God wants us to be, to have a Purpose, and encouraging relationships,and to live your life with Purpose. Now God wants you to remember two things, one remember who you are, and two that his PURPOSE is PEOPLE.
Clayton, thanks for the reminder to remember.