Sunday, March 1, 2015

Why YOU should stay in the church

If you didn't read my past blog about church, I encourage you too just so you too so you understand that I like you realize there are faults in the church and the church frustrates me all the time. Yet how can we expect a perfect church or even loving church when we sinners are making up the church? Interestingly enough just 2 days after I wrote my blog about my frustrations with the Adventist church, our school started having Week of Prayer. I didn't know what it would be about and the theme was "strands" and ultimately why we as believers should stay in the church even when it's difficult. Now this topic could have gone so many ways, but I seriously believe it was an answer to God to many student's prayers and such an encouragement to us all.

It's so easy for us to look at the church and point out all the wrongs. Quite honestly, and unfortunately, almost all of us have been hurt by the "church" by one way or another. By a person's unkind words, a lack of caring, unfriendliness, comments, fighting, hypocrisy... we can make a list of all the reasons we are frustrated at them. Yet what is the church? The church is the body of believers. We, if we claim to be part of Christ's family are a member of his body, we are His bride- His love- and He sacrificed His only son for the church.

We can't leave the church because people hurt us. The church hurt Jesus all the time. His closest friends even betrayed him at times. We have to stay in the church because Jesus is the head of the church. He loves the church! Because He is in the church, I want to be in the church.

What happens when you leave the church is like a lizzard losing his tail. Your church loses you- but you will be replaced. Unfortunately though the tail will die and similarly without a group of believers surrounding you and encouraging you, your spiritual walk will die.

We have to keep forgiving the "church"- the body of believers striving to follow God- they are are brother and sisters in Christ and like us they will make BIG mistakes sometimes, yet we have to love them the way Christ loved us and forgave us.

You say you don't fit in at the church, they don't like you, or you are tired of the hypocrisy. Jesus understands. The church is the body of believers and when Jesus was on this earth, many believers didn't love Him, didn't like Him, didn't accept Him, and were hypocritical. Nevertheless, Jesus died for them.

Christ commands us to break bread with other believers and fellowship together. You can not walk the Christian life alone. God says that there is power when two or three believers gather together in prayer, and that a strand of three is not easily broken.

I encourage you to not only "stay" in the church, but to let your light shine in the church. None of us is perfect including pastors, elders, and Sabbath school teachers. But what would happen if we all stood up and said "I will be a light in my church". I will welcome guests who nobody talks too. I will hug both the elderly and the youth making them feel accepted. I will lead out in Bible studies. I will help sing for song service. I will play a role. Because this is God's church, I will do my best to help it and to serve others there.

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