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Welcoming and Warm

From 2008-2014, I had the joy of serving as pastor of a Baptist church in the middle Tennessee town of Alexandria, which is about 50 miles east of Nashville. Alexandria doesn’t have a lot of people, but it’s filled with great people.

Of course, we weren’t the only church in town. There were several, but the Church of God there in Alexandria had a sign that I’ve never forgotten. In fact, they still have it. It is one of those old marquee-style signs and above the marquee was painted permanently, “Church of God. Friendly? YES!” Honestly, I don’t know if they are actually friendly or not, but they sure want to communicate that they are.

But you know, friendliness is something that we as Christians are called to. While the world may see this as weakness and scheme to take advantage of it from time to time, Scripture says that it’s not weakness, but rather being Christ-like. The Holy Spirit tells us in Romans 14 to welcome one another as Christ has welcomed us, for the glory of God.

We should seek to be welcoming. We should seek to be warm. We should seek to live in harmony. We should seek to make a place for people and include them, especially those desiring to follow Christ.

There should be a sign over every one of our church doors that says, “You are welcome here!” Better yet, don’t put it on a sign. Instead, be the type of people whose lives declare this welcoming heart and friendly disposition. Welcome others as Christ welcomed you.

Change begins in you!


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