Why Come to Church on Wednesday Night?1
Wednesday night is one of the most exciting times of the week at Life Point Baptist Church. Apart from the Sunday morning worship time, there is more energy and enthusiasm in the building from 6:30-8:00 p.m. on Wednesday evenings than at any other time during the week. On any given Wednesday night, you will find the building bustling with seventy to seventy-five children, age three to sixth grade (as well as all of the workers that it takes to keep up with those kids!). The building is so full on Wednesday evenings that the teens have to meet in a local home, and the adult Bible study usually has to meet in a borrowed room in the church across the street! So what is happening on Wednesday nights that is so exciting, and why should you consider joining in?
Awana is a program for children ages three to sixth grade. Each week, the kids memorize verses, play games, and listen to a Bible lesson. By completing sections in their books, the children are able to win awards that they can pin or iron on to their club vests or shirts; and at the end of the year, special prizes are handed out to the clubbers who complete their books. The children love the program; but besides that, what make it valuable?
If I were to summarize the value of Awana in four words, I would say, “Bible memory and evangelism.” The best thing about Awana is that it encourages children to memorize God’s Word. Memorizing the Bible is one of the most profitable, and perhaps one of the most neglected Christian disciplines. Memorizing God’s Word is an excellent way to meditate, and the Bible is clear that meditation is essential for spiritual formation (Josh 1:8; Ps 1:2; Rom 12:2). Psalm 119:11 says, “Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You.” In addition, Scripture memorization is a great tool for evangelism, since the Bible is what the Spirit uses to produce faith in the heart of person (Rom 10:17; 1 Pet 1:23-25).
That said, one of the best things we can do for our children is to have them memorize Scripture. Scripture memory is especially strategic for young people, who are able to memorize more quickly than adults and who will have those verses to draw from for the rest of their lives. The verses in Awana are strategically selected, and often relate to what the Bible says about Christ, sin, and salvation. If you bring your children to Awana, they will be encouraged to memorize verses about the gospel and will have the opportunity to interact consistently with caring leaders about the content of those verses.
On Wednesday nights, the teens carpool from church to the home of one of the youth worker families. They talk, have a lesson, and often play a fun game and eat a snack. It is a more casual setting than Sunday morning, and one that the teens really enjoy. As well, the teaching time is very valuable. Right now, the teens are working through a survey of the books of the Bible. As they do so, they are focusing on the character of God and incorporating engaging videos from thebibleproject.com. If you have questions about the youth group, please contact Craig Lawson.
Whether or not you have children or teens in the home, Wednesday night is a great opportunity to serve in the church! With so many kids running around, the Awana ministry could always use more help! Your role could be as simple as listening to kids say verses or supervising toddlers in the nursery, or as complex as running a game or teaching a Bible lesson! There are opportunities to work in a more hands-on capacity with children, and opportunities to help with secretarial duties, as well. If you are interested in serving in Awana, please contact our Awana commander, Jeff Darling.
One of the neat things about our Awana program is that we are able to serve a number of families who do not regularly attend Life Point on Sunday mornings. Many of these families are at least loosely connected to area churches, but there are some who are completely unchurched. Through Awana, you have the opportunity to interact with these children and potentially be a part of reaching their families for Christ! There are multiple families who have either gotten saved or joined our church whose first contact with Life Point was through Awana.
Adult Bible Study
We also offer an adult Bible study for those not working in AWANA or youth group. From 6:30-7:30 p.m., the adults meet to pray and study the Bible together. Many people find that this provides them with a helpful “refresh” and context for fellowship halfway between Sundays.
Recently, the group, led by Pastor Kit, has discussed the previous Sunday’s sermon. This is a great way to further digest the passage that was preached, discuss topics in the passage that could not be fully developed in the Sunday morning message, and consider applications of the sermon in a conversational, small group setting.
However, for the next seven weeks, the group will be doing an inductive study of the Gospel of Mark, using a curriculum called “Christianity Explored.” This would be an excellent study for a new believer or for someone with questions about what Christianity is all about. The setting will be relaxed and informal, and there will plenty of opportunities for questions and discussion. It would be a great study to invite a friend to, or just to attend for the sake of adding to the discussion and building strategic relationships for the sake of evangelism and discipleship. Click here for more information on the Christianity Explored study.
In conclusion, I’d like to offer a word of grace. This is the last of a four-part series of posts on the value of the various services that we offer at Life Point: Sunday school, Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night. (Click here to access part1, part 2, or part 3.) Since we try to be intentional in everything we do, we believe that each of these services has value for you and your family. However, we also realize that many people have other responsibilities that make it difficult if not impossible for them to attend every service. Our goal is not to make you feel guilty because your circumstances keep you from coming as often as you would like. You are not a “second-class citizen” because you do not attend all four services, every single week. In addition, we trust the Spirit to guide you in wisdom choices regarding how you manage your schedule as you submit to Him.
However, as we’ve said before, we do believe that church attendance is both biblical and important, so we hope that you will make it a priority to be with us as much as possible. Pastor Kit and I continue to pray that along with your own personal growth in Christlikeness, your commitment to Christ’s church would also grow.