Yesterday, we celebrated the life of my Great Aunt Velma Pecht. She was one of a kind with an infectious laugh. As with most celebration of life services, the ministers shared a variety of funny stories, cherished memories and noble qualities of Aunt Velma's life. There was one description in particular that peeked my attention. Aunt Velma and my late Uncle CJ were described as "low-maintenance church members." I listened attentively to hear what this meant. There were several qualities that stood out.
1. Presence - They were there. They attended regularly and usually sat in the same spot. It is important if you are going to be a part of a church family that you attend regularly. In our hectic culture, it is easy to decide that we need the extra rest and stay home. However, we need each other. We need the encouragement from one another. We need our brothers and sisters in Christ to pray with us. We also need to encourage others and be there for them.
2. Friendliness - I referenced that Aunt Velma and Uncle CJ sat in the same place. According to their Pastor's wife, they did that strategically. It was a seat on the left side of the sanctuary, three rows from the back and on the aisle. That location allowed them to greet people as they came in and left. A low-maintenance church member reaches out to others and is friendly. Church should be the friendliest place on earth.
3. Givers - A Low-Maintenance Church Member invests into the Kingdom of God. Aunt Velma spent a lifetime investing in the Kingdom. Malachi 3:10 (NLT) states, "Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test!" The storehouse is your local church. As a member of the church, you should be a faithful giver.
4. Servant - As a member of the church, we should always look to give back as much as we receive. When I talk to pastor friends, the common needs of their churches are more money and more workers. In scripture, the church is referenced as the body of Christ with each part having its responsibility. As a Pastor, my job is to equip the saints to do the work of the ministry. I can only fulfill that commitment if people are willing to serve. Your Pastor can only fulfill his God-given assignment if you are willing to serve. As a member of the body, you have a part to play and a place to serve.
As a Pastor, it made me smile to know my aunt and uncle were a blessing to their pastors, their church and the Kingdom of God by being low-maintenance church members who attended regularly, were friendly to others, gave and served.