There is a common phrase in Church lingo, “Stealing Sheep”. What do you think it means?
I think stealing sheep is when you go out and look through another shepherd’s flock and “woo” them out of that pen.
What do we, as leaders of a church, when we know people have come from another church, same denomination or not, do? We’ve learned the hard way (why is that?). What we’ve started to do is ask them some serious questions. Not to be nosy but to know where their heart is at. If they’ve already left the other church – why did they? If they’re thinking about leaving – why are they? If they’ve left on bad terms, we encourage them to go back and speak with their pastor and then if they still feel to leave – ask to be released.
There are good and legitimate reasons for leaving churches. But how they do leave is the most important thing in the entire world. Sheep enter the pen and pass the shepherd through the gate and they need to leave that same way – not a hole in the wall or a back door.
If someone comes into your church but hasn’t dealt with the offense of the last church… they are very likely to leave your church the exact same way!!
K, why was I writing in this stream…
oh ya, to tell you about my day today… it was GREAT!!! 6 new families have started coming out to the church in the last month. The youth group went from 3 kids to 16 in my basement this week!!
5 or 6 weeks ago we cleared the air with regards to a few situations that had to do with gossip and offense in the church but more importantly — above all of that — we, as in ME, searched my heart and others did the same. We had a conference the weekend after the ladies retreat I went on so it was a few weeks of being worked on by the Holy Spirit! We have been on an incredible journey. To say the least, after much repentance for not guarding my heart and allowing myself to get offended – God is adding to our numbers. It is He who builds the church.
It’s an amazing time we are in. Not because we have more people in our church but because I see the hand of God working in everyone’s lives and increase is coming in every area – it is quite incredible – from boldness – to faith increasing – to seeing JOY return!!! There is a sweet stirring above us in the heavens!!!
Thank you Lord – You are everything to me!!