Gary Hoag: The bottom line for the church – John Richardson

“I’ve discovered that it is always inconvenient to love my neighbors. I’ve learned that every person God brings into my life has unsurpassable worth, and that they are worth Jesus dying for. It is irrelevant whether or not they help increase attendance or help us meet our monthly giving. They are my neighbors, and I am called to love them. The church is not a business where we evaluate how our time affects the bottom line. There is only one bottom line for the church–to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength and to love our neighbors as ourselves.”

John Richardson in “God calls us to love our neighbors even when it hurts” article in Christian Leader magazine, January/February 2015.

This California pastor is spot on! Far too many churches measure “the bottom line” in terms of money and budget, when it should be associated with loving God and loving our neighbors. Let us pause and ask ourselves these questions: What’s my church’s bottom line? Should we find ourselves understaffed, the Master said to pray for laborers (cf. Luke 10:2). Should we find ourselves in need, He said to ask the Father for what we need (cf. Matthew 7:7-11). In the meantime, we must focus on what He asked us to focus on: loving God and loving our neighbors.

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