The purpose of this program is to conduct a worship service outside with the local community. This will be an opportunity for outreach and partnering with others in your faith–based community.
Choose the venue for a community worship meeting. It could be outside on the lawn or a driveway of the church. Outreach means to go where the people in the community gather. This may be a local park, the center of town, the lake, or a sports field.
Consider those in the community who might be interested in partnering with the corps for this event. They could be local businesses that sponsor food, a community group like the ministerial association, other women’s groups and churches. Partnering with other groups opens up great opportunities for future relationships. These partnerships also provide extra help and resources to make the outside worship service a success.
In preparing for this event make sure you have a good sound system and any permits that would be required for your outside worship service.
After the worship service have a picnic with games, a bounce house for families, or a community informational fair. This worship service can be a time to connect with your community on a relational level.
Serve picnic food—hotdogs, hamburgers, potato chips, cookies and lemonade. Or hold an ice cream social. For an even simpler fare, serve popcorn along with something cold to drink.
Use welcoming signage and balloons so the location is easy to find.
Welcome and Opening Prayer
Praise and Worship “Come Now is the Time to Worship”
“Draw me Close to You”
Devotional – “Draw Me Close”
Draw Me Close
We live in a busy world. We find ourselves involved in work, social events, hobbies, family and school. Sometimes it feels like there is barely have enough time to eat and sleep. Our life can seem like a busy cycle that will never change.
Sometimes the things you have always loved to do and were important, fall by the wayside because there is just not enough time. You used to attend a small group Bible study, Sunday services and Christian fellowship with friends. Now you go down a road where you can’t feel God anymore and you find that you are just caught up in a world of busyness.
In James 4:8 we read, “Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world.” God promises that if we come close to Him, He will come close to us. It is a great promise to us as a community of believers. But we have to take the time and draw close to Him and not let the world overpower us. Satan will use anything he can to separate us from God. He will keep us so world focused that we will not even be able to feel the presence of the Holy Spirit.
In Luke 15:11–32 we find the story of the prodigal son. Many of us have had family members who were like the prodigal son. They have been so far away from God living in the world but when they lost everything they made their way back home and to God. God is like the father of the story. He opens His arms and welcomes us back in again. He draws us close.
The second part of James 4:8 says, “Wash your hands you sinners; purify your hearts.” The washing of hands comes from the priesthood in the Old Testament. Cleaning one’s hands was a ceremony instructed by God at the time. The priests observed this ceremony before entering the tabernacle, signifying the cleansing of impurities. The only way we can be cleansed today is through having a relationship with Jesus Christ, which comes from submitting to Him. We must submit ourselves to draw close to Him.
James calls us to remove everything from our thoughts and actions that keeps us divided between God and the world. We must focus on God and be loyal to Him in all things. We have to keep the routine busy things that separate us from God and His word under control so that we can submit to His will for our lives on a daily basis. We want our hearts to be purified with His love. And this is what our Savior who loves us wants for us.
Let us remember to draw close and keep our loyalty to God so that we can participate in the community of believers to which He has called us.