Church? What’s the Point?

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I believe in God, why go to church?

A large and growing portion of our population believes in God, many even claiming to be Christian, see no reason to go to church. Busy lives, bad experiences, no experience, uncertainty of beliefs and countless other reasons erase the perceived value in gathering in the name of Christ. I say perceived because like other parts of our well being, the result of neglecting it isn’t something we notice right away. It’s a gradual process to start feeling worse from a lack of exercise, gain weight from a poor diet or stress, lose imagination from monotony, and if we’ve never had something, we don’t know what we’re missing anyway. The deficit eventually shows itself quite plainly, though we may not know how or why it got so out of control.

“Home Sweet Home”

It’s as old a saying as any, home sweet home is an homage to the comfort and peace that comes with isolation from the outside world in a familiar environment. Unfortunately home sweet home is losing its meaning. Sarcasm is increasingly it’s common use as we return from a long day only to begin a new schedule of must dos or family conflicts. Internet, television, video games, homework, work from home, cell phones and more can destroy the tranquility of home and bring the world right in with us. The place of solace a home should be gets lost and all we want to do is “get away”. Those who can afford it find and return to a favorite vacation spot, buy a beach house or cabin in the woods, a “home away from home” to seek the comfort and rejuvenation we get from knowing what to expect and relieving ourselves from our responsibilities, if only for a while.
Home is more than a place, it’s a feeling. “You can never go home again” is reflective of the ever changing world and our ever changing selves. Home for most people is a time and place of consistency, free from interruptions and pressure.

But Church?

Those who believe and those who are seeking are missing a glorious opportunity by not gathering as a body to honor God. It gives us a chance to shut off cell phones, relax with familiar faces and learn, to be reminded and expand our understanding of the truth that everything will work out, and why it doesn’t depend on us. A time to honor our unwavering, eternal creator. Any flame needs fuel, gathering with others in the name of the Lord refills our spiritual lamps. We are sent to shine the light of Jesus in the world and without regular engagement with the word and the body of Christ its not a light anyone will see in you.
Exercising once in a while just leaves you hurting for days. Yo-yo diets don’t work. Engaging any endeavor only comes to fruition with steady, ongoing attention. Starting to attend church can be painful at first. Finding one that fits, facing your brokenness, and accepting that Jesus Christ gave up his perfect life for you are all difficult things to come to terms with. Going to church once in a while is like a yo-yo diet, you start to feel better so you give in to old ways and by the time you start again you’re right back where you started. To gain any earthly comfort from your faith you must engage it regularly.
God asks only for our faith, give it to him and he will support us through whatever challenges the world throws at us. Once we accept His truth and turn to His way, life is given to us. Devoting time to God changes our perspective on the things we fill the rest of our time with, going to church is an honor and a blessing, not an obligation.

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