A note to the church in America. . . .
When you go into church this week, begging for more time for fellowship, for refreshment, for connection. . . stop, whoa! Is that what you are really there for? Consider how your time gathering with the body of Christ is meant to be spent at this time. Are we asking the wrong things of the wrong people/organization on the wrong occasion?
All week we rush, hurry, pack our days, from dawn to dusk with more than is humanly possible, we live frantic, crazed lives, live beyond our hours, live beyond our finances, live with little time to offer hugs, doing what we want to do / "have to do", no time for listening, no time to notice much less to care for the needy, the wounded, the hurt, the poor. No time to share a laugh, share a simple meal at home, offer hospitality, much less to to share the good news of Jesus Christ. . .
but on Sunday when we worship (or Saturday night, etc.) we beg for more time for 'us' to connect, we are weary, heavy laden. . . but is it the time for this? Is it taking our need and pointing the finger at the wrong source to meet it?
Should we not instead . . . order our weekdays, to honor Him as we let Him be God and not try to be ourselves God doing everything everyone on Facebook, Twitter, etc. is doing? Need we have the newest DVD's as soon as they are released? Attend every show that arrives in town? Take our children to every imaginable fun activity we can pack into a weekend? Insist they play every sport? And ourselves to play every sport, rush for meals on the go, usually eaten with money we should spend on current and future needs rather than just for this stressed moment?
Or should we recreate in our later years, fill our time as we see fit, doing pretty much what we want when the mood strikes, letting others serve, care, listen, hug, help, and tell others about Jesus and eternity?
We can not become holy in a hurry or at leisure.
We are missing life because we are living it at ethernet speed or a calm slooooooow pace.
We want the best, the fastest, the newest, the safest. . . and we share, care, and give so little to those we love, those who are truly in need. . and our lives are lived taking on more meds, more vitamins, special waters, more conferences, more vacations bigger houses, newer cars. . . when what we need is to
Cease and know He is God
Take inventory of our list and highlight what He has actually called us to do
Fast from media long enough (I hear your screams of 'this woman is NUTS!') to listen, look at your life today. What has God truly called you to do? How much has He asked of you? What are you assuming as you long to be with more people, doing more things, being out and about, so you can list all you have done in the day. . . . is your hunger, insatiable hunger due to the fact that you are longing for true food, true life, true meaning? You already know where that is to be found but you are listening to other voices more than His. Honestly, how many hours, well, lets say minutes, do you really give to listen with your full attention to God in His Word on any given day, week, month, year?
Consider the cost:
your body can only take so much
your soul can not grow with this lack
your relationships will only take so much neglect and rushing about
your witness - how are you a light to others? how are you like an example to God's presence in a life. . . .
We all hear media influence us to be unfulfilled, they promise much but they are not giving us what we truly need. They move the goal further beyond your reach every day. Every day.
What is The Goal of your life?
How much time do you truly give to fellowship with the body of Christ outside of church worship time? Is it because of your schedule? Your choices? Your driving inner urges to keep up, live on adrenaline?
Practice seeking God first every day with time spent quietly with Him, reading His Word with a plan to read it book by book rather than a quote here and there. Listen to His voice before you hear the voices of the World, eat the true and life giving eternal food before eating your breakfast bar on the run. Shhhh, listen, read, then listen again. Ponder what you hear.
Meet with others and look into His Word together. His ways are the best ways, He won't deny you, He will give you the life you are really seeking in all the hurry, scurry, and blurry. And you will find richness, meaning, and time for that fellowship you ask, beg, and often demand of the church when you meet for worship. Your times in the Word getting to know His voice will birth within you a love for His people, a love for all people, and desire to share, care, and make time. It takes time for this. . . can you spare that kind of time?
Then come and enjoy the weekly time to worship with your body of Christ, His Bride, corporate worship together for His Sake. Enjoy, anticipate, and delight in worshiping the God of this universe, The God whom you know, and enjoy doing so with your fellow believers. It will not be primarily for you, but you will find blessing and refreshment in it.
Church of today - awaken to His still small voice which is still there, offering direction for your life.
Truth for Life
This is what the Lord says:
“Stop at the crossroads and look around.
Ask for the old, godly way, and walk in it.
Travel its path, and you will find rest for your souls.