Majoring in Minors

A teenager stops attending church because a Sabbath School teacher commented on her necklace, while the teen who is in the church pew every week becomes pregnant and runs away from home. This is a classic case of “majoring in minors”. Someone paid attention to the minor problem of the girl wearing a necklace, while another girl dealt with a much bigger issue.

It happens with adults as well. At potluck, board meetings, even Sabbath School and church services there is a bickering that takes place. If you listen to the bickering, you may notice that it’s not Biblical. It’s not “reasoning together” as Christians should do. It is usually about the color of the sanctuary carpet, the cross on the wall, the member that brought chicken to potluck, etc.

We even do it when visiting non-attending members. We cannot wait to ask the question, “why haven’t you been at church?” What seems important to us is minor to them. If they aren’t attending because they cannot manage their child with special needs or they cannot afford gas money, then their church attendance itself is the minor problem. Jesus wouldn’t focus on that. Jesus would focus on helping fill their needs. Jesus would focus on the big picture.

What if…

What if everyone in your membership roster has enough gas money to drive to church each week, to work, to school? What if they all have child care, elderly-family-member care, are off work on Sabbath? What if every possible obstacle between people and the church are miraculously resolved?

If every need were fulfilled for every member, would the pews be filled?

What if they’d rather sleep in, or take the family to the park, or take a day trip? What if they worked all week and want to catch up on House M.D. all day on Saturday?

The Real Problem, and the Permanent Solution

IF by some miraculous intervention, an individuals needs are completely fulfilled to the point that they want for nothing, and are still not attending church, there is another problem. And it’s a major one.

If someone would rather lie on the couch and watch Netflix on Saturdays, then no amount of whying them to death will get them back in the door. It’s not a physical or emotional problem. It’s a heart problem. They aren’t bad people if their “heart isn’t in it”. By staying home they’re being honest with themselves, with God, and with you.

In return, you can do what Jesus would do.

Jesus did not only minister to those who He saw in the synagogues. He didn’t only love those who crowded onto the streets when He passed by. Jesus went after people. He mingled with the people.

God Himself is relentless, and He wants to be with us. He designed us to want to fellowship together, and the fellowship may not always happen at church. The meaningful friendships are probably built outside of church altogether, and that’s okay.

When all their needs are met, sometimes they still need one thing: love. Love them whether they’re in church or not, whether they’re smoking cigarettes or not, whether they’re unemployed or not. Love them whenever and however you can, so that they can see Jesus in you. Love is the only thing that will bring them back.