"I was thinking..."
I was thinking…Pastor Steve
"Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing,
but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see
the Day approaching." Hebrews 10: 25 (NIV)
You may be like me and have noticed that our regular attendance has declined since Covid has entered our culture. I was thinking that we don’t want this to be the new normal. The church only thrives from meeting together. Just one person worshiping God is not the church. They are part of the church, but not the church.
That’s why we are called the body of Christ…it takes all of the parts of the body to make it work. The hands, feet, eyes, ears…for a true functioning body, it takes all of the parts to make it work well. I think this is what has me thinking today. The church in America seems to think they can function perfectly fine by watching a video. Sure, you can grab a great message and be inspired, but it takes the interaction with other Believers to truly bring about the Kingdom of God. Going to church isn’t just about “me.” It’s about you, me, them, and Jesus.
So, if we become the Lone Rangers of church and only worship at home, then who do we confide in, seek godly advice from, bounce ideas of theology off of? Where is the support for the single parent, the widow, the child or teenager? I guess they can figure it out for themselves or catch the latest ideas from TV or YouTube. But that’s not the same as interacting with ‘real’ people and a Holy God.
Here’s the kicker in the above sentence, “let us encourage one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” We are on a trajectory to the end of time, the End of Days. That’s what the author is writing about, the final Day that will come. As I did a study in a Sunday school class years ago on the Book of Revelation, one thing stood out…we will need one another in those Last Days. Yes, we need Jesus, but here the author says we will need each other even more so in those Last Days. Why? Because the world will be coming apart, governments will fail, finances will plummet, family member will be against family member, It will be ugly and the only positive will be the Church of Christ. We, the Church, need to be practicing meeting together now, to be in the habit of meeting during adversity, so that when the tough times come, and they will, we will be encouraged, bolstered, and prepared in advance.
You may be asking yourself, “Okay, Pastor Steve, what does this have to do with February?” Well, I’m glad you asked. Jesus gave us two commandments, “Love one another and love God.” And, this is the month of love – Valentine’s Day. If we can manage to do these two things, love God and one another, then we’ll be okay. However, if we aren’t meeting together, we won’t be able to really love one another, will we? We’ll just have the concept and not the actions. We have to be in proximity of one another, rubbing people the wrong way, getting on their nerves, being in disagreements over various issues, and, in the process, not holding grudges. We have to be forgiving, humble, and willing to ‘give’ on things that aren’t all that important. But if we aren’t in community with other people, we won’t be able to practice those things. This isn’t just a head knowledge type of thing to do, this love one another thing, it’s a practical characteristic that we have to live out. That’s the only way we know if we are getting it right or not. It takes practice…and prayer!
Let’s try to do better in meeting together this year. I know, Covid is still out there. But for those who aren’t in the high-risk zone, let’s pray about it and prepare to meet it head on. We’re still in the training stage for the Last Day, but it is coming and sooner than we may think. God bless and have a wonderful Valentine’s Day.