I’m just the most all-over-the-place blogger ever, aren’t I? Remember a few weeks ago when I started the series on Colossians? Then I got sidetracked by our anniversary and marriage advice from people I love and respect. Since then, I’ve been developing an E-course all about Holy Yoga. (It’s coming soon, so watch for it, friends!)
Consequently, I haven’t posted in weeks although I have written up a storm of blogposts in my head.
Oh, well. I’m the boss of this little spot on the internet, so it’s all good.
I’m back to Colossians today with God and Designer Clothes, Part Three: Why I Love the Church. Catch up here: God and Designer Clothes and here: God and Designer Clothes Part 2: How to Be a Friend
#notabiblescholar #scripturelover #tryingtofigureitout
Isn’t Colossians an encouraging book? I learned so much through my study of it and I found it full of practical advice. God used Paul’s words to spark things in me and one of those things was a greater love for the church.
Occasionally, I hear people saying negative things about the fellowship of believers. They have been hurt by others and they may end up separating themselves from the very thing God meant for our good.
I have to admit that I have been that complaining person at times in my life, but now I regret those words and I’m sad that I ever said them. And I want to put myself in the corner. The thing I’ve noticed about myself is that the thing I complain the “church” isn’t doing, is the very thing I should be doing-loving others well.
I’m sorry for the disrespect I have voiced at times toward the group Jesus Christ died and resurrected to save. And I am apologizing publicly for it. And moving on because Jesus says I can.
Now I say, “Three cheers for the church!” A huge gift from the Father.
WE ARE THE CHURCH PEOPLE, THE BODY OF CHRIST.
Let’s pause a minute and let that soak in.
I want to worship with a group of people who were like the Christ followers in Colosse. Paul showered them with complements at the beginning of his letter to them, describing them as HOLY, FAITHFUL, LOVING to All, Sharing the Gospel and bearing FRUIT, being transformed by God through Christ.
Sounds really good, doesn’t it? They weren’t perfect and Paul addressed some of their issues in the letter, but they had a good start, don’t you think?
So, I guess if that is the group I want to be a part of, that is the believer I must be. No way can I drum up all of that on my own, so I will stay in the word, keep praying, be discipled by others, and let Holy Spirit TRANSFORM ME.
One thing I know for sure. I NEED the local church and I LOVE my local church. My church family means the world to me.
Eleven reasons I love the church:
- They are my blood-of-Christ family. They pray with me, study with me, cry with me and praise with me.
- They hold me accountable. People in my church family know me and if I go off the rails, someone will come find me and try to gently restore me.
- They disciple me. I have online teachers and preachers that I love to listen to, but there is something different and better about a pastor or Bible teacher who looks me in the eye and shares with me what Holy Spirit is showing him or her.
- We love the same community. Since we live, work and play together, we work for the betterment of others we all know. We try to share the gospel with those we see around us.
- They give me opportunities to serve. Our church Facebook page and bulletin are full of needs that can only be met if people like me do the work. Serving others is our privilege.
- They remind me of my purpose. I’m not here to put myself first. The church and scripture reminds me constantly that as Christians we have a high calling to share the gospel and our gifting for the benefit of others.
- They know my children and grandchildren and I know theirs. I love the fact that the little ones in our church are acknowledged and encouraged and recognized by many, many adults who genuinely care about them. We need multi-generational communities!
- They let me try new things and accept me whether I succeed or fail. And will jump on board the next time someone wants to try something different.
- They provide the opportunity to be mentored by someone farther along in their walk and to mentor someone a little younger in the faith. These may not be “formal” mentoring relationships, but they are happening just the same.
- They give me lots of chances to practice the fruit that the Holy Spirit is producing in me. The local body isn’t perfect because those of us who comprise it are not perfect. We get annoyed, disappointed, and impatient with one another, but we GET OVER IT. We don’t have a choice because Christ expects us to. And we have a little more grace for one another the next time.
- They’ve got my back. Just last week, I was supposed to prepare communion and forgot all about it when we decided to run away from the farm for a 24 hour vacation and visit 2 of our grandbabies. Communion didn’t enter my mind until I arrived at church Sunday morning and saw Dave taking care of it. I apologized all over myself and he didn’t scold, roll his eyes, or even frown at me. He laughed about it and said it was ok. I APPRECIATE that and will try to show the same kindness when I pick up the slack for someone else.
The church at Colosse inspired me and I hope you. No one has time to try to wander through life without a church family. We need each other and GOD KNEW IT.
Let’s step up, get involved and BE the LOCAL CHURCH!
Your turn: Why do you love the local church?