Not so fast.
Getting people to come and hear the gospel is great. The Church should always be inviting people to Church, whether it is Easter Sunday or any Sunday. But we must remember that the goal is not to get them to Church, the goal is to make disciples.
When Jesus commanded the Church to make disciples he said we are to be, “teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” (Matthew 28:20). Making disciples and random church attendance for Easter are not synonymous.
This next week will be an indicator regarding how God moved on Easter Sunday. Will you have people come back, or will their attendance be one and done. Unfortunately, most will be one and done. First of all, don’t fret. It is God who does the work in hearts, not us. We must only be obedient and share the Gospel. However, for those who do return the work is only beginning.
The Church is now called to welcome those who return, and find out where they stand with Jesus. The only way we find out those answers is to lean in and talk with them. Try to discover if they are just curious about Him? Do they claim to believe in Him? Are the following Him? You will get a lot of answers, but don’t worry; the solution is always the same.
Paul was a master builder when it came to Church planting and growth. God used him in a powerful way to expand the Kingdom. When he went into a town to share the Gospel, he was all in. This is what he says in 1 Thessalonians 2:8, “So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us.”
The Church could learn so much from this simple statement, “we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves.” This should be the post Easter attitude. As some people come back to your Church, give yourself to them. Sit down with them, listen to them, welcome them, love them. Jump into the trench of their life.
As you give of yourself, remember the calling of Christ, “teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” This relationship is one with a goal in mind. At the center of it needs to be Jesus. So when you jump in the trench, don’t forget your Bible. See if they want to start reading the Bible with you one on one, or invite them to a Bible Study, or invite them to Sunday school.
So is it time to relax? Absolutely not! The work is just beginning. Give them the Gospel and give them yourself.