I want to let you know what a blessing it is to know and be a part of each and every
one of your lives. You are family to us. You are the reason that we moved to Missoula.
I don’t think it’s an accident that each of you found and became a part of River City Church. And we just love to be a part of what God is doing in and through each of you!
As the summer season approaches we realize that many will be (and already are) traveling and out of town on Sundays. That’s completely understandable and I hope
that during this time you will be refreshed and your families will be drawn closer
together. Family time is important. I know that we have many vacations already
planned, and we can’t wait to get out ourselves!
I also know how important it is to stay connected with the rest of the church. Whether
we meet on Sunday mornings or Sunday nights, it’s easy to put other things ahead of meeting with the rest of your church family to worship and celebrate all that God has
done and is doing. As important as vacation and family time is, we need to have balance.
I mean, what good is it if we are doing it at the expense of our spiritual well being and
the spiritual well being of our families?
Hebrews 10:25 tells us not to stop gathering together with other believers. Why is
that? It’s so that we can encourage one another. It’s encouraging when each of you
shows up on Sunday evening and worships together with us, and serves beside us.
On the other hand, it can be discouraging when very few people show up. It’s easy
to think that it’s not that big of a deal when you’re not at church on Sunday, that you
won’t be missed…but I would disagree. We really do miss you when you’re not there,
and we feel that it actually changes the spiritual atmosphere of our worship gatherings when a large portion of our people are gone. River City Church is still small enough
that it feels like a family. Just like you notice when one of your family members doesn’t
show up to the dinner table, your church family notices when you aren’t there on
I certainly am not trying to make you feel guilty or anything like that. If you know me
at all, or have listened to the sermons the last few weeks, you’ll know that I’m not into rules. And there are times when you just need to get away and will miss a Sunday
evening. But as your pastor, I simply care about your spiritual growth and the growth
of River City Church. I know that when people get disconnected, spiritual growth stops. I’ve seen it happen so many times. It’s just like a plant that is disconnected from it’s
roots; eventually it will wither. We don’t want to see you or your church family wither! We want to see you thrive!
So what can we do to make sure we don’t lose momentum this summer, both
individually and as a church? Let’s stay connected! One of the reasons we moved to Sunday evenings is that we knew that people would have the option of playing all
weekend and still make it to church on Sunday. But for that to work, we have to be intentional and purposeful about showing up on Sunday eves together.
Here are a few practical things you can do to make sure Sunday evening services
remain a priority:
1) Sit down with your family and discuss the importance of being a part of your
church family. Make a commitment together to continue attending our worship
gatherings throughout the summer, even if it means cutting some weekend
getaways a little short.
2) Identify the barriers to making it to those gatherings on Sunday eves. As a
family, brainstorm ways around those barriers. I guarantee you can find a way
if you make it a priority!
3) Get connected with a LifeGroup that will be meeting throughout the summer.
Several of them are ongoing and will be doing BBQs and other activities on a weekly
Let’s make it our challenge for the rest of this year to buck the trend of declining
church attendance during the summer. After all, “The Church” isn’t somewhere
you go…it’s who you are and you don’t cease to “be” who you “are” because the
season changed. Let’s be the church. Let’s make gathering together a top priority.
If we do that, I believe we’ll actually gain momentum and I guarantee we will see
God use River City Church to do great things in our lives and our city! In case you’re wondering what your part is, it’s to simply show up and God will do the rest! Let’s