Embracing the Church
Church is not just a building where we go on Sundays. It's not just the people who go to church, and it certainly isn't only answering the question of "Are you going to church this weekend?" with a yes or no. Church is something that you embrace. It is an attitude, a lifestyle, and an idea of what it means to live as followers of Christ.
It is a community where believers gather together regularly in order to support each other and encourage one another in their faith (1 Corinthians 14:26).
Church should be about serving God by serving others (Matthew 25:35-36), and being willing to help those in need regardless if they are part of our congregation or not (Luke 10:25-37).
Over the past couple years, many of us stopped going to church in person, we ceased our volunteer work, and we pressed pause on our fellowship practices. It became commonplace to watch services online, meet with small groups via Zoom, and we achieved quite a comfort level with not being in the same room with each other. These options for worship were a blessing, but leaving your comfort zone is a must if you want to make progress in your spiritual life.
As a Christian, it's important to remember that our job is not just to grow ourselves, but also to help others grow as well. If all we did was focus on ourselves, it wouldn’t be so bad to enjoy church from our living room sofa, but we'd miss out on many opportunities for personal growth and transformation, and we'd fail to reach people around us with the good news of Christ's love and grace.
We’ve come full circle and it’s time to leave your comfort zone behind when it comes to your faith life. Leave it behind when you're serving others; leave it behind when you're learning more about God; leave it behind when you're helping someone else learn more about God; leave it behind when striving for holiness (which requires cutting out sin from our lives). Leave your comfort zone for the sake of returning to the church body that sustains each other.
Embracing church will help you get plugged into a community of believers that will build you up and keep you on the right path. God created us for relationship and community. The believer’s experience has so much more depth when we pursue God alongside our brothers and sisters in Christ. It allows us to have others around us when we’re struggling, and for us to give back to them in their time of need. Of course, we all need these relationships and encouragement even when things are great in our lives.
If you're new to church or if it’s just been awhile since you’ve shown up in person, look for ways to get plugged in by connect with church leaders. One of the best things about going to church is that it's a place where you can connect with other people and enjoy discipleship opportunities such as small groups where friends can encourage one another along life’s journey together while learning more about Scripture itself.
Published on Thursday, September 29, 2022 @ 11:16 AM EDT