Five Minute Friday: This weeks word: Look
But we can’t really make any progress unless we are also able to evaluate the things that are right and good and worthy to pursue and cherish. So with eyes that want to be open I will tell you some things that the church is mighty good at. Some things that may need work but are worth working for and some things that make it essential.
1.) Being two or more gathered. There is something beautiful about voices raised together in worship, prayers lifted to the heavens, and arms open wide. Only the church can join people as a body. Only Christ can make them unified as one. “For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.” Matthew 18:20 NASB
2.) There’s no better place to practice love. Christians are supposed to know better. We’re supposed to have the Holy Spirit, so when we get it wrong in church it’s often easier to judge that person. When we practice love here, we’re offering up a chance to embrace and pour out the grace we’ve been granted.
3.) God tells us to. He says not to forsake the gathering. So there it is. Obedience. He said so. Good enough reason for me. Hebrews 10:24
4.) It is an outward expression of an inward love and dedication to God. When we gather, it says something to the world. It says we value being together. It says we join to worship one God. It bears witness to our convictions, faith, and trust in His church. It says we push beyond the petty to answer to a power that can mend the brokenness and bind hearts together.
5.) It builds up our spiritual strength. How can we stir up love and good works if we reject the gathering of believers? God wants us to encourage, exhort, and elevate each other in His body. We are to serve each other as we serve Him.
6.) It gives us accountability both to our spiritual leaders and also for our spiritual leaders. We speak the truth in love. We don’t water down, we don’t jump ship, we wade through and look for ways to love even as we are loved. Sometimes that means hearing the hard stuff.
7.) There’s power in numbers. One person praying=awesome Two=super awesome A multitude praying=We enter His throne room with power. He says that, “if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 18:19 There is power in unity and there is power in prayer when hearts pour out and flow up to Him in chorus.
8.) We need to hear the gospel on repeat. We wander so easily. Our hearts turn to this gospel or that. We need to hear that we are saved by grace through faith. We need to hear and see what the good news is. We need to witness it with our eyes and radiate it with our lives. When we do that, church is a mighty fine place to be. And part of the gospel message, is that grace can, will, and does cover a multitude of sins. His love covers it all.
I wrote this as part of the wonderful Five Minute Friday Extravaganza happening every week over at Lisa Jo’s place. The most friendly place on the web where we all gather and write our hearts out for five minutes with no over thinking, no major editing, no major stress. We just let out our thoughts to the clicking of keys and push publish with abandon. Then we gather round and spur each other on. Wanna join in? We’d love to have you.
Also, with that being said, this is in no way an exhaustive or even complete list.
It is a brain dump of the ways I feel God shows us the value of church and I’m sure I missed a lot of them but hey, I’ve only got 5 minutes. And for full disclosure, this took almost 8. Whoops.
What do you think I missed? Let me know in the comments and I’ll be talking more about each of these areas later in this series.