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    THE SMALL CHURCH

     

    The Phil and Bev Show, or maybe it was The Bev and Phil Show, that’s what Barb called it. She was referring to the act we called Sunday morning services. Since I’m writing this column, we’ll call it the Phil and Bev Show. (smile)

    We did our best to minister to everyone, and we really did have some wonderful times. We meant every word of what we said, and we were not playing games. God was there in a very special way, and His presence was evident.

    These were the early days of our ministry at Church on the Coast. We were just learning to sail this little boat we call a church, or you might use the clich?, we were just “getting our feet wet.” If you put the two phrases together, that is probably an accurate description of our learning process. No, the ship wasn’t sinking, but it wasn’t smooth sailing either.

    In a very small church, we were there to do most things. We set up on Sunday mornings. We ran the bulletins off on Saturday nights, until Barb started helping with that one. I led worship, and preached. Bev taught Sunday school classes.

    On Sunday evenings, and Wednesday nights, we did much the same. The only difference between the evening services, and the Sunday morning service was that we held the evening services in our home. Between twelve, and thirty people in your home for an evening can be fun. Twice a week, for a couple years, it can be draining.

    People received the Lord. People were baptized with the Holy Spirit. People grew in faith, and learned about God. Others even began to pull up alongside, and begin to carry some of the weight. But, so much revolved around our activity, that it was often, just as Barb described it – The Phil and Bev Show.

    It has taken many years of struggle with developing a philosophy of ministry, and a number of crises to come to a place where we don’t regularly perform the Phil and Bev Show. But, even today, it still occasionally happens. At one point, we were forced to move the meetings out of our home, because an “anonymous neighbor” complained to the city. Too many cars were being parked on the street. This will make you change the way you do things real quick.

    I don’t care to be the center of attention. I would be happy, if visitors came back to Church on the Coast, just because the people were nice, or because they liked the personal interaction which occurred in the order of the service.

    God wants to show off His Son in the gatherings we assemble. I think He also wants to show off the totality of “His body,” so that people will get a fuller glimpse of Him. He’s not interested in the Phil and Bev Show, or whatever you might call it in your church.

    Phil Wyman, pastor of Church on the Coast in Carlsbad, is compiling this material for a book. If you have any questions or responses, or if there is a subject you would like to see addressed; You may write to Phil Wyman at 4740 Dalea Pl. Oceanside, CA 92057. His e-mail address is [email protected]

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