by M. Kenneth Lyon

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What's in the Box? (2 of 2)
Dr. M. Kenneth Lyon
Ephesians 4:1-6, 11-16
November 15, 1998

Last week, we had the box up here representing Matthews United Methodist Church and we said, "What's in the Box?" What are the defining things about Matthews United Methodist Church that the whole world can see and know? And, oh we looked at a few things in the box. We found some peanut butter, a cookbook, and found one of Mark's old sermons (and it hadn't gotten any shorter since last week), and then we found that bottle of hair coloring for female pastors turning 40 in December. Strange thing, though. Last week, this was full! We also discovered last week that if we are going to talk about identifiers for the church, we want to be known as the church that reaches people for Jesus Christ. We believe very much that people that are far from God, God loves, God cares about, and God commissions us to be persons with Good News, to reach out to them in the name of Jesus Christ. So, we want to be a church that reaches people. And we also want to be a church that teaches, and a church that serves. What I want you to do is to say those three things with me. Ready? Reach, Teach. Serve. If anybody anywhere asks you, "What are the defining characteristics of Matthews United Methodist Church," I want you to be able to say to them very clearly without any hesitation, "We reach people for Jesus Christ. We teach them to maturity in Christ. We serve God and neighbor by relieving suffering." Those are our 3 primary tasks. Those are the things that really define what goes in the box because everything that we do must have one of those three elements as a part of it in order for us to be a faithful congregation. If there is something that we are doing that doesn't fit one of those 3 criteria, either it needs to be modified so that it does fit or we need to let somebody else do that because that's not our primary business.

We have been talking about reaching ... what about teaching? Wh ...

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