Size Doesn’t Matter
by Becky Swartzendruber
Okay, so we have been on this The Venue journey for a while now – a year and a half total, but six months since launch. Launch day we had our record attendance of 51. We are in a small rural community of about 13-15k, so that’s not bad really. Of course I was hoping for more. But, hey, people came!
Since then we went down to around twelve faithful, including my family of four, but we are starting to grow again. We average about twenty right now.
When our numbers dropped drastically and people on our launch team left, it hurt... and it was discouraging.
We know the calling God has placed on our lives. We know the vision that God gave us. So why aren’t we seeing it?
We have had Sundays where I was leading worship to an empty auditorium because everyone that showed up was on the worship team.
We have had people turn their backs on us, spread untruths about us, and try to hinder God’s plan. We have struggled to make ends meet. We have wondered where the money for rent was going to come from. We have even struggled to find the money for the essentials, like God’s true holy water–coffee.
God was shifting and sifting. He kept reminding me that even though we only had 8-12 there for a few months, those people are our rocks. They are growing, and we are growing as a church family. That means something.
So many times, we as pastors get wrapped up in the numbers game, but we have to remember that it’s not the size that matters. It’s about the lives that are changed, including our own.
Michael’s speaking skills are growing, and my confidence in my calling has grown exponentially. People who haven’t stepped foot in church in many, many years are coming and becoming part of our family.
These things are important, so very important.
Why did we get into this gig in the first place? To show Jesus’ love and be his hands and feet. If we can do that, then we are doing what he has called us to do. The people will come when the time is right.
Until then, I will keep pressing forward–loving people no matter what.