It’s because I’ve missed church for two weeks in a row!!! We were out of town on both weekends. We usually try to make it when we are away, but it just didn’t happen this time.
Anyway, since I feel weird I was thinking about church and what it means to me and why I feel so “off” when I don’t go!
Church isn’t about the building…it’s not the brick and mortar that I miss when we aren’t there, and yes to some extent it is the people, but it’s mainly an act of obedience. So really, not going to church is an act of disobedience. You know that feeling you used to get when you did something wrong as a child, that’s kind of like this…I’ve been disobedient and yet God loves me the same.
We are commanded to set aside a day for the Lord. That day is Sunday for us. Sunday is the beginning of the week!! If you don’t get off on the right foot, how can the rest of the week go well?
There are several thoughts about church, many people don’t feel the need or think that if they semi go that’s good enough, or what about the people who attend a Bible study somewhere and think that’s good enough? God gives us spiritual gifts, gifts to be used to minister. How can you grow and nurture your spiritual gift if you don’t go to church and share it with others who are trying to nurture theirs too? The Bible says we are to meet with other Christians to use their gifts to strengthen us. The Bible also talks about the church meeting the needs of others. It is the church’s responsibility to take care of the needs of others, if we don’t see the need to go to church, what will happen? What if everyone decided not to go, there would be no need for a church? I Corinthians 12:21 expresses it this way: "The eye cannot say to the hand, I have no need of you." Neither can a Christian claim to be self-sufficient today.
I also believe that the church is a place of accountability. It is really easy to rationalize sin if you (and your group of friends) are the only ones that are “in the sin” and discuss it. How many times have you gone in church and felt like you were getting your toes stepped on? That’s an awesome thing when you think about it! That means you obviously got something out of the service!
I believe that we are the body of Christ, the church is within us and we carry him where we go, but the “corporate gathering” is a necessary part of your Christian walk. The Bible tells us to praise God with a song…do you lift up praises to God on your own? It’s not just the sermon that you get out of a church service…it’s the whole package. I love my Sunday School, but it isn’t the same as church, neither is our Bible study. Church is somewhere you praise God with music, hear a sermon instead of putting your two cents in like Sunday School. Church service is also where most conversions happen. I’m sure they have happened in Sunday School or Bible studies, but most of the ones that happen in church happen in the service. You wonder what that does for you….it gives you a renewed sense of witnessing. It reminds you that sharing your faith can produce results. This is also where you witness baptisms and dedications and communion (which is also an act of obedience). It’s amazing what all you get out of a church service!! This verse should be enough for the argument of going to church: Hebrews 10:25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.
So you see, the week just isn’t right if I don’t go to church. I will leave you with this thought from our preacher (by the way, this came from a church service).
If you don’t think you get anything out of church service, just remember:
You have to take the top off the tank to fill it up!!