Church Involvement

Creating a Culture of Involvement in Every Church

Month: January 2018

2nd Annual CIC Now History

Getting Your Members Involved in Ministry
The second annual Church Involvement Conference took place on January 19 and 20, 2018 in Athens, TN at Athens church of Christ. Its sole purposes were to train involvement ministers and to assist congregations in getting all their members involved in ministry. Christians came from seven different states.
Because of prior engagements and lots of illness, the numbers were down this year but not the enthusiasm. The theme was “Making Members into Disciples” and keynoters were Dr. Tim Gunnells who spoke on the “Greatest Command” and Athens pulpit minister, Mark Littleton speaking on the “Second Command.”
Classes with breakouts took place Friday evening and Saturday morning. Of special interest were minister Matthew Thomas (Pickerington, OH) speaking on the topic “Are Gifts for Today?” and a panel addressing the interests of millennials with two Athens members Bradi Sewell and Caleb Rogers on the panel with Bert Paddock of Maryville, TN and Jeremy Hinote of Augusta, GA. Both work with youth and millennials. The goal of the panel was to create understanding of those born in the 1980s and the 1990s.
Travis Irwin, the involvement minister of Athens church of Christ and director of CIC, spent all day Friday training and leading several men in a study of involvement ministry. He also taught classes on involvement Friday night and Saturday.
Three meals were furnished, displays of a past Athens Ministry Fair were set up and a display of “Love Athens” was also shown. The Church Involvement Conference believes that Christians are God’s workmanship created for good works and that every Christian should be zealous unto good works. They also believe that when we are serving we are most like Christ and that serving is a mark of true discipleship.
The CDs for this year’s CIC are available by contacting the church office at 423 745 0554. The cost including shipping is $10.00 a set.

Travis Irwin, involvement minister of Athens Church of Christ, Athens, TN
www.churchinvolvement.com
travisirwin@att.net
423 745 0554

Maintenance Done Well

Doing Maintenance Well

We all know the importance of maintenance. If we don’t maintain a house by cleaning it, painting it, and repairing it, it will self-destruct. If we don’t maintain an automobile properly by changing its fluids and driving it, it will also fall apart.
If we don’t maintain our physical bodies by healthy living, eating properly, exercising and good rest, our bodies will deteriorate and we will have poor health and die prematurely.
When it comes to the Lord’s church with her accompanying/accommodating needs, the same could be said. If elders don’t keep up with the sheep (a maintenance issue), the sheep will scatter. If we don’t keep up with members who need encouragement, they will fall away. If we don’t keep the church building clean, prepare the Lord’s Supper, provide childcare, pay the bills, greet people, have good Bible classes and provide a proper atmosphere for learning and growth, the church will die a slow certain death. “Maintenance” issues have been downplayed for far too long in the church; it is time to recognize the importance of maintenance well done.
Yes, we need to move beyond such things and be ‘missional’ churches: in other words, if all we do is basic maintenance and we don’t evangelize, the church will cease to exist and its doors will close. However, I’m addressing the issue of doing maintenance well. Why should it be done well?
Jesus did all things well; we emulate Him by doing the same. I was always taught to do and be my best. Jesus did. When it comes to maintenance in the church, it should be done first class because our efforts represent the Lord who deserves and commands the best and it is a reflection upon Jesus. Anything worth doing is worth doing well—and this is true of maintenance.
Without good maintenance you cannot fulfill the mission of the church. Let’s assume that winning souls (evangelism) is not maintenance. Without good maintenance, there is an absence of a good (conducive or pleasant) atmosphere for numerical (and spiritual) growth in the church. Improper maintenance can create an awkward and uncomfortable atmosphere that impedes or discourages growth. Those who have been members of a local church take for granted the parking and the interior (in some cases, interiors are dirty and dated) of a building. Guests do not. They want good parking, clean rest rooms and attractive surroundings for themselves and their family members. Our guests should expect certain things. You cannot grow a church where there is lack of preparation and confusion. I know the gospel is the most important thing. However, maintenance well done contributes to the growth and welfare of the local church.
God has placed gifted people in maintenance roles and it should not be considered as trivial. Most of our ministries are maintenance and they are designed to accommodate members. The folks that run those ministries are spiritual people who are using their God-given spiritual gifts, life experiences and skills and passions to serve. Maintenance thus provides many good opportunities to use God’s gifts. This is important in God’s sight.
What am I saying? Don’t down play ‘maintenance’ in your congregation. You cannot function and grow without it. Yes, you need to do more than just ‘maintain’ what you have. However, you may not grow spiritually and numerically without maintenance well done.
Travis Irwin, Athens, TN

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