It’s time now to plan to re-gather. Yes, I know life is full of surprises. 2020 was a perfect example. And yet in the midst of surprise and change, we can count on our God:
The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer, my God, my rock where I seek refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.Psalm 18:2, CSB
And that Rock, our Rock, has given us the task of shepherding His sheep. There are some things we should remember about sheep. Sheep are defenseless. They need protection. Left to their own device, they will eat grass down to the roots–killing it. They need a shepherd to lead them to safe pasture and still water. Sheep will run from a voice they don’t know. They need to build trust with a shepherd over time.
These principles apply as we re-gather the sheep for groups. The world is a scary, dangerous place. They need to know God, His Word, other believers, and the safe place of a Sunday School class or small group. They need to be fed regularly on God’s Word in order to respond obediently, or the world will fill them with selfish, bad ideas.
Lead the Sheep to Re-Gather
They need to be led. Some are distracted. Some are self-absorbed. But many are paying more attention than we realize. The sheep need us to lead them. Who me? Yes, you! As pastors, directors, and group leaders, the sheep are looking for you to lead them to re-gather in groups.
Some have wandered away. They need us to care enough to pursue and find them. Many have developed bad habits by time away. Reach out. Many have lost touch with the other sheep. Make contact. Encourage. Help. Be persistent. Be patient and caring. Lead them!
They need to see you leading. They need to see the plan. What is the first step? After praying, talk with them. Pray with them. Mobilize contact and care. Lead them one action, one relationship at a time.
Re-gathering will take time. Be patient. Don’t grow weary in well-doing. Be persistent. Lead them to care for members, those who have wandered away, and those who still need Jesus.
Some may never return. Love them anyway. But some are waiting to be invited. Invite them now. Some are lost and need encouragement and care. Will you lead those in your care to reach out?
Groups working together with God and each other make a difference. Lead them to re-gather. What is your plan? When will you start? Why not now? Lead. Make disciples. Be revolutionary!