At every service at Palm Beach Lakes, members are asked to fill out an Attendance Card to record their presence. Why do we do that? Some might think, “That’s so old fashioned; we don’t need to do that anymore.” Others might say, “What a dumb tradition; the old people like doing it but it doesn’t make sense to me.” So, why are members asked to complete cards at every service and why should we do it and want to do it joyfully?
Communication. Attendance Cards provide a perfect means by which to communicate certain matters to the church. For example, “Is anyone in the family sick?” Here is an easy method to communicate those needs. There is also a place that says, “I think you should know…” Are family members traveling? Has one of your children received an honor or award? Is there some piece of information that you think the church, the church office or the elders should know?
Contact. Attendance Cards provide a convenient way to update any change in your contact information. The church is a family and a family is to love one another, serve one another, encourage one another, comfort one another, admonish one another, etc. To fulfill our familial responsibilities, church directories (a.k.a., “Family Albums”) are regularly printed and distributed to PBL members. Changes to your contact info (like address, phone, email) can be shared on the Attendance Card so that the new information can be shared with the church.
Consideration. There are many good and valuable purposes for filling out Attendance Cards, but there is no more needful purpose than out of consideration for our elders. The number one reason that the elders request that cards be completed at each service is because the shepherds know all too well that one’s attendance in Bible study and worship is a fairly accurate barometer of one’s spiritual health. When a Christian’s attendance record starts to slip, that is one of the first perceptible symptoms that his or her soul may need attention. Even the Lord connected the proper observance of the Lord’s Supper on a weekly basis with one’s spiritual health, for when one fails to properly partake of the Lord’s Supper, he becomes “weak and sick” (1 Cor. 11:30). Since the shepherds of the congregation “must give account” for the souls within their care (Heb. 13:17), the completion of Attendance Cards by the sheep is out of consideration for their shepherds and the monumental, soul-tied task to which the Lord has assigned them.
“We’d like to ask that members complete their Attendance Cards at this time.” Oh, Yes! I’d be happy to do so!