Getting Serious and Having Fun All at Once!

Categories: Stories

Last month I attended a “Bishop’s Convocation” at Mount Wesley in Kerrville. This is a time that is set apart for Bishop Dorff to cast vision and provide leadership to all the clergy of the Southwest Texas Conference. The theme this year was on RADICAL HOSPITALITY.

I was pleased that our church is on the cutting edge in promoting RADICAL HOSPITALITY. You are recognized and categorized by the United Methodist Church as being a “Welcoming Congregation,” which is a status achieved by churches that cover specific guidelines along the lines of hospitality.

One of the main speakers was an executive from Southwest Airlines who talked about how RADICAL HOSPITALITY plays such a vital role in their company.

Southwest Airlines was built on the vision of a guy name Gary Kelly. He offered a completely new way of doing business among the airlines. His vision was to, “offer the lowest fare in the industry and have fun doing it.” He also had a wonderful strategy of doing it. He said, “Let’s treat our employees like family and our customers like guest in our homes,” which was a radical shift from the traditional business model of, “The Customer’s Always Right.” The result? Southwest Airlines rose to the top of the industry.

There are three things that Southwest Airlines look for in every employee: (1) A Warrior’s Spirit (2) A Servant’s  Heart and (3) A Fun Loving Attitude.

Can you imagine what would happen if the Church adopted that kind of mentality?

1. A Warrior’s Spirit

Too often the church tries to do ministry in its own strength with its own resources. There’s no warrior cry and no gusto! Henry Blackaby in his study, “Experiencing God,” talks about how the world is unimpressed when the church tries to do ministry with its own limited resources. What get’s the world’s attention is when the church steps out in faith and attempts to do something only God can do through them.

“What our world often is seeing in our day is a devoted, committed Christian serving God. But, they are not seeing God. They comment on what we are doing, “Well, there’s a wonderful, dedicated, committed group of people serving God.” They, however, do not see anything happening that can only be explained in terms of the activity of God. Why? Because we are not attempting anything only God can do. Our world is not attracted to the Christ we serve, because they cannot see Him at work.” – Henry Blackaby’s, “Experiencing God,” page 117

I think you as a church ought to be commended because I see a lot of people out there with a Warrior Spirit and it’s one of the many reason’s I’m proud to be your pastor. You’ve demonstrated that mentality with your work and support of THE CORE! May we never lose that Warrior’s Spirit. (Joshua 1:9; Ephesians 6:10)

2. A Servant’s Heart

At Southwest Airlines it’s not uncommon to see high level executives taking time out of their busy schedules to do such menial things as vacuuming an airplane to give the flight attendants a chance to grab a bite to eat. You will also see them do such things as working the ticket counter or unloading baggage. Why? They have a Servant’s Heart.

I think of Jesus. If there was ever a servant… it was Jesus. Yet He was the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. Jesus said in Mark 10:45, “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to SERVE and to give His life a ransom for many.”

As a Pastor, I love to watch you love and care for one another. It’s no secret that whenever anything needs to get done in the community… you usually see a whole lot of people from Medina UMC on the scene.

3. A Fun Loving Attitude

At Southwest Airlines they believe in having fun, but it’s not about being silly. It goes much deeper than that. It’s about taking your work seriously… but not the extent that you can’t at the same time have some fun. I watched a flight attendant on YouTube this week do the pre-flight presentation to the beat of a rap. He had the whole plane clapping in sync while he went over some of the basics about flying with Southwest Airlines. That’s FUN!

It’s important in our effort to reach people for Jesus Christ that we never forget that Jesus came that we might, “have LIFE and that we might have it more ABUNDANTLY.” Part of that is learning how to have fun! Unfortunately, there are some churches that take themselves way too serious. You walk in and nobody is smiling and everyone is far too serious and they wonder why they aren’t attracting new people. How does the saying go? “All Work and No Play…”

One of the reasons you’re going to have a hard time getting rid of me as your pastor is because YOU GUYS KNOW HOW TO HAVE A GOOD TIME! You’re serious about reaching for people for Jesus Christ, but you believe you can have a good time doing it!

Let’s make sure that we never lose that cutting edge of having a Warrior Spirit, a Servant’s Heart and a Fun Loving Attitude that’s rooted in the person and character of Jesus Christ.


Bill Stegemueller

Author: Scribe

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