It’s very easy for us to make excuses to not gather with other Christian believers. It could be that our work schedule doesn’t allow for it. It could also be that we were hurt by someone or something within a church and decided we were done.
I’ve been there for both things. Actually, this week, I decided to stay home and spend some one-on-one time with God and listen online rather than attending an in-person service due to my work schedule shifting. So, seriously, I get it.
However, if we truly believe that God’s Word is living and we need to obey the truth’s within, then I think each of us needs to read that passage above again. Go ahead. I’ll wait.
I had to go and read it again too.
So, what does that mean for us?
I’m not saying you need to attend a church. Actually, for almost two years, I didn’t step foot inside a church building. Part of it was because I was hurt by people; part of it was because I was mad at God (the good news is, He can handle my anger and He loves me anyway).
What I am saying is that we need to surround ourselves with other believers. I tried to do life alone. I tried, through my anger, to have a solitary relationship with God. It was sorely lacking.
I still didn’t go to a church service, but I started bringing up some of my thoughts based on my Bible reading with my mom, whom I lived with at the time. Just that simple sharing of thoughts lifted my spirits. Because I was in community with another believer.
Having friendships is great, but if you’re all believers and you’re not actively engaging in Scripture together, something is missing. I dare you to take that extra step and share your thoughts from a passage you recently read.
The conversation may not be long-winded… but anything is better than nothing. Having active conversations about God and your faith will help keep your passion for God burning bright.
When we are constantly in God’s Word, we start to look more like Him. This means that showing love and motivating one another also comes more easily.
And if you’ve been avoiding a church building because you’ve been hurt? I’m sorry that happened to you. But I also know that not every ‘church’ is the same. God will lead you to a place where you can deepen your faith and grow connections with people.
Churches are full of people, and people are broken. This means that sometimes we get hurt. But if we can see beyond the hurt and start loving the broken people (and remember – you’re just as broken), we may find that our original church was exactly where God was calling us all along.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, it’s hard sometimes to be motivated to attend a service and be surrounded by people. Help me to see beyond myself and embrace the people you’ve called to be a part of my life. No matter my reasons for not living in community with my fellow believers, help me to see past my excuses and see it as an opportunity for growth. In Jesus’ Name, amen.