It’s tempting. Really tempting. I’m talking about having worship on Christmas Sunday at New Story West End. It’s tempting because I know if we don’t, there will be those who condemn us, those who tell us we’re not faithful, and those will judge us.
But we’ve never found the fear of what others might think to be a good reason to make decisions. And for us, having worship on Christmas Day is not the right decision. Here’s why:
- We are a church that bases everything we do on prayer. We have prayed and long and hard about this and do not believe that Jesus is telling us that it is imperative for us to have corporate worship on Christmas Sunday. We will have 3 Christmas Eve services where we will sing, pray, hear a message, and have communion – everything we normally do during a Sunday worship service. We believe that Jesus will be at all of our worship services on Christmas Eve and will be just fine with us worshipping 12 hours earlier than we normally would. We believe that the faithful worship of Jesus is more important to Him than the specific time that it happens.
- We believe that the Body of Christ is bigger than just New Story Church. We know there will be many churches in our area that have services on Christmas Sunday. For those in our church who want a Christmas morning worship service, we encourage them to visit one of these churches and bring New Story’s love to them. We hope they’ll learn what they can from these churches and bring it back to New Story to help make us an even stronger church. We believe competition between churches is unfaithful and celebrate with our sister churches who will be having services Christmas morning.
- We are a church that believes very strongly in family and we want families to have the opportunity to spend time together on Christmas morning in a relaxed, joy-filled way. We will have handouts that we’ll give out with suggestions for how families can worship together on Christmas morning. We believe that God is so powerful that God can do incredible things as families worship together on Christmas morning in their own homes.
- At every one of our worship services we need almost 40 volunteers to make our worship service and children’s programs run smoothly. Without them, New Story wouldn’t be the awesome place that it is. This doesn’t even include our staff who helps the things run smoothly. Having worship on Christmas morning means asking all of them to leave their loved ones and give almost their entire morning to volunteering, right after having volunteered on Saturday night for Christmas Eve worship. Christmas Eve is a great time to reach out to those who don’t regularly go to church, and we believe that having a service on Christmas Eve instead of Christmas Day helps respect all those who volunteer their time at New Story while reaching out to those who don’t normally come to church.
We know there are those who will disagree with our decision and we are okay with that. Christians can disagree with each other and still love each other. We ask that you pray for us, and we will pray for you. And to those from New Story Church who are reading this….thanks for being a place that is always willing to take risks, think outside the box, and go to whatever lengths it takes to make a difference in this world.
Want to see some information about our Christmas Eve services? Click here!