When you hear the word "church" the first thing that comes to mind is most likely a building you visit each week to fellowship with other believers. I have attended church most of my life. I have sat in the pew or the small group and taken in truths from God's Word. However, over the past few years God has shown
me that the church is more than a building. It is a body of believers who live in a way to proclaim the gospel to the lost world.
I think when Jesus instituted the church it's purpose wasn't to be a place to go but a way to live. God called the church to take care of the poor and needy, the widow and the orphan. He called us to go to the lost and share the gospel. He called the church to be the hands and feet of Jesus. But in modern day America we see church as a place to come together for a couple hours a week to fellowship with our Christian friends, sing a few songs of worship, hear a message then be on our way until the next time the doors of the church are opened. I don't think that's what God designed the church to be about. He doesn’t want us to create
Christian country clubs for ourselves. He’s called us to be salt and light to a dying world. How do we fulfill God"s call if we don't take His message outside the walls of the church? The answer is, we don't.
We have to be willing to get out of our comfortable routine and be willing to radically change our definition of church. We have to be prepared to be misunderstood by others and to be accused of taking this "Jesus thing" too far. We have to get alone with God and ask Him to show us the needs around us. We have to be prepared for radical change and no longer being satisfied with mere religion. That may mean that we won't be sitting in our regular pew every Sunday morning or in youth group every Sunday night. Serving others can be messy, exhausting and just hard. We may have to give up some of our own routine to serve others.
At times this presents us with difficult choices for ourselves and our children. For instance, my 17 yr old son loves the Lord and loves Sunday night youth group. He is a football player and the FCA huddle leader at his high school. He has the opportunity twice a month to attend a Sunday night FCA group full of his classmates, many who are unsaved. In order to do this he has to miss his own youth service at our church. We've encouraged him to see the Sunday night FCA group as an opportunity to minister to his classmates. To use the platform that God has given him as a student athlete to make an impact in the lives of his unsaved friends. What greater mission field is there than your own high school full of lost souls? It's easy to be the light in a room full of other lights, but it takes courage and strength from the Lord to be one of a few lights in a very dark room.
There's nothing wrong with being a leader in the the youth group or church but as followers of Christ our purpose is to "go into all the world". And since the church is really a body of believers, we must take the church into the world. We must feed and clothe the poor & needy, care for the orphans and widows. We must be the church every day
I am a Christian, a wife, a mom, a VBS crafter, a coupon clipper, a thrift store shopper, a football fan, a cook, a student of the Bible and an avid reader.