You Need the Church … And the Church Needs You3
You Need the Church … And the Church Needs You
Sunday morning comes along again. You get the kids dressed nicely (for the most part), you hope they grabbed some type of nourishment, you remembered to shower and look pretty presentable. You show up almost on time, get the kids to their Sunday School classes, sing some worship songs, mostly listen to the sermon, shake some hands, give some smiles, pack the kids in the car, and drive home. In seven days you’ll do it all over again. Doing this same routine over and over again every week can get a little monotonous. It may be tempting to even feel like it would just be easier and more fulfilling to just stay home and listen to a sermon online, or read the Word on your own, or some other replacement. I mean, it’s not a big deal to miss a few weeks here and there, right? It’s not like the church will stop functioning without our family missing a Sunday morning every once in a while. Especially if we’re feeling sick or our family is going through a hard time, everyone will understand if we’re not there.
While this type of thinking may be all too common, it is not the way the Scripture talks about the gathering together with the church. Hebrews 10:23-25 says, “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” The purpose of our gathering together on Sunday mornings is not just to worship God. We need the body of Christ around us to help stir us up to greater love and affection for God. We need the body of Christ around us to help us withstand temptation to sin and lust. We need the body of Christ around us to help correct wrong thinking about God and His Word. As Paul says in Romans 1:11-12, “For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you - that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.” We need the body of Christ. We cannot be healthy, growing Christians without it.
Our family recently went through a health scare with our son. Everything turned out completely fine, and a few days later was Sunday morning. Passing someone in the hall, they asked me what I was doing there and why I wasn’t at home. To be honest, I wanted to be. Earlier in my walk with the Lord, I probably would have been. But that morning, I knew that my soul needed to be surrounded by other Saints. I needed to hear other people praising and worshiping God. I needed to be reminded that my God is good, and Jesus is enough even when life gets heavy. I needed to model to my son that Jesus is worth it. Jesus is worth praising and His church, His bride, is worth pursuing even when trials come.
On that Sunday, and with every Sunday, the church body needed me and my family just as much as we needed them. Like a hot coal taken from a flame, we cannot walk through this life full of sorrow and pain on our own. We need one another so that “your abundance at the present time should supply their need, so that their abundance may supply your need …” (2 Cor. 8:14). We need to be strengthened, encouraged, giving love, receiving love, asking for help, giving help, hearing the Word, sharing the Word, sanctified, and sustained through the weekly gathering with our local body.
As Sunday morning is again approaching, I pray you will count the cost. I pray we will all count Christ and the growth of His body as far better than our comfort, social life, sleep, family, and even trials. The body of Christ needs you and you need them so that we can “grow up into every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love” (Eph. 4:15-16).