The phrase, "If you build it, they will come" keeps running through my head. All those trucks full of grain used to go someplace else to deliver their cargo. Now they come here. It says something about offering people what they need (or didn't know they needed). It says something about giving them a nearby place in which to gather. It seems to me it is exactly what rural congregations have to offer the people who live near them. People who may not realize they need the services a church offers. People who may not realize they need a place though which to impact the world. How do we engage the people around us? How do we ensure they know we're there and that they need us?
God of the harvest, there are so many around us who still need to hear of your love, who still need to meet your son. Don't allow us to become complacent, or to be blinded to the needs around us. Open our eyes to see those who are not being served, those who most need us. Help us to find ways to give our people the push, the encouragement they need to reach out beyond themselves. Let us not ignore the potential harvest that is all around us.