This week we were short on personnel as half of our pantry crew were out due to sickness. But Gwyn and I are so grateful that the ones who were available were flexible and helped us by covering several duties so that we could remain open to the public. It is the commitment to serve and to show up that I respect.
This reminds me of another one of my readings from this past week:
By Leslie Snyder
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another —and all the more as you see the Day approaching. –Hebrews 10:24-25
One Sunday morning, a woman went in to wake her husband and tell him it was time to get ready for church, to which he replied, “I’m not going.” “Why not?” she asked. I’ll give you two good reasons,” he said, “One, they don’t like me, and, two, I don’t like them.”
His wife replied, “I’ll give you two good reasons why you should go to church. One, you’re 45 years old, and two…you’re the pastor!”
Variations of this story have circulated for years. While the joke is funny, the underlying truth is equally as sad. Many people choose not to be a part of the Church. Their reasons vary. Some had a bad experience in their childhood; some see the Church as hypocritical, while others feel like they already did their time in church as children and now believe they have earned time out, like being paroled for good behavior.
The truth is, as believers, we need each other and we need the Church. No one is meant to live life or to worship God in isolation. Instead, we are created to come together in community. You may argue, “Can’t you experience God on your own, without going to church?” Because God is continuously revealing Himself throughout creation, His Word, and His people each and every day, the answer is yes. However, we are called to be part of the Body of Christ and without each and every person, the Body is incomplete.
In the Western world where individualism is highly valued, the idea of dependence on one another can be seen as a weakness or a flaw in our character. But in the Kingdom of God, the opposite is true. We are one. And, others need you as much as you need others. Unlike a job with a comfortable retirement package to enjoy once you have “done your time,” our time as members of the body of Christ is eternal.
Is regular church attendance part of your life? If not, take some time to find a Bible-believing church where you can find true fellowship [if you feel as though you cannot find it here].
If you do attend church regularly - [here or elsewhere] - invite some neighbors, coworkers, or other family members to come with you.
FURTHER READING: 1 Corinthians 12:12-31; Acts 2: 42-47
I can't believe that we are in our sixth year in Concord! We have certainly seen a lot of coming and going, patterns of decline and growth, seasons of life - career changes, promotions to glory, births, graduations, and health concerns - growth in leadership, and newcomers coming into the fold; and it's all part of a community.
Our family has certainly grown since we've been here - spiritually, physically, socially, and emotionally. We will continue to pray and ask for discernment, work hard, step out in faith, and commit ourselves to the ministry of this corps and community. We are not perfect, but we are grateful that you graciously support us. Let's keep working together. You are loved.