Just because we are freed in Christ does not always mean that we do not end up walk back into another prison of our own making. If we isolate ourselves from other believers, we stunt our growth potential. Many do not go to church because they feel there are too many people who are broken, and they do not live the life they are preaching. The church is built for the broken, just as much as a hospital is built for the sick. If we expect everyone in the church to achieve perfection why would people on the outside want to come in? I know personally, I feel inadequate in the presence of those who think they’re perfect, I feel like they are judging me on my imperfection. The freeing part of a church is that it is made up of imperfect people, forgiven by God on a journey, working together to reach the world with love.
Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favour of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. (Acts 2:46-47 NIV)
I wonder if we are doing things right these days? The formula in Acts 2 46-47, says the met at the temple every day together. They fellowshipped together, they praised God together, they enjoyed each others company. And the Lord added to their number daily. Awesome. What commitment they had to one another and the mission.
I guess the question is how do we apply this formula to our lives our church?
1) are you meeting regularly with your church family? Are you only at the church Sunday mornings and never think a second thought about it all week long? Do you join other members for a weekly bible study? If the church has daily times of prayer do you attend or if they did would you?
2) do you spend time with your church family outside of the church setting? Do you connect with them, invite them over, love them? Are we to busy with other things to make time to forge these relationships?
3) if you find to have them over do you praise God in those times if do you just talk about whatever is in the news.
4) have you taken time to meet the people in your church, expand past the few that you may know to experience others that God has placed in your church. God can use people you wouldn’t expect to touch your life if you would only say hello.
Why would the Lord add to their numbers for following this formula? Why would it be so easy for people to want to follow Christ if we lived like this? People are looking for a connection, they are looking for people who honestly and genuinely are true in what they believe. If your church group at the core is united and loving to each other it will be seen and people will be drawn to that. No one is drawn to bitterness. They are looking for freedom to be themselves and find what they have been searching for their whole lives.
I pray today, if you feel disconnected with your church family, maybe you have been attending for decades or days, it is not too late to connect, start plugging into your family if believers. Invite people to fellowship with you. Start a weekly bible study, ask your church to start opening up the church for open prayer, get involved, love your brothers and sisters in Christ. And most important Forgive them as Christ has forgiven you. There is a freedom in a relationship with Jesus and with your fellow believers.
Father, help us to connect with our family of believers. We trust as we connect you will draw others to join us and grow in you. Let us disciple others in the faith. Bless the church, so that we may bless the community around us. Amen