It’s important that we become melded in to a local Church. The Church is God’s family, His earthly body. If we’re not part of His church, we’re not part of His earthly body. It’s got nothing to do with salvation, but everything to do with purpose and fellowship. We’re all in this together. That includes Christianity.
This is a tough one for many of us (myself definitely included). The hard part about being truly melded into the Church is that people will see our flaws and failures and we don’t like that. Well I certainly don’t anyway! I don’t want anyone to see the areas of my life where I struggle and where sin often overcomes. There’s something daunting about the people in your Church knowing you for who you really are. But then there’s something truly beautiful about it too. If they know our flaws and yet learn to love us despite them, what a wonderful relationship. If we understand the struggles of our fellow Christians, we’re able to help them through and vice-versa.
The Church is often a place where people are hurt and may not want to be a part of ‘Church’ anymore. I’m coming to realise that perhaps this is unavoidable. Maybe wherever there are mortals, sin and therefore hurt will exist. But then that’s how it is in a ‘natural’ family too. We hurt eachother. Husband and wife say things they don’t mean. Parents yell at children and later regret it. Siblings say hurtful things to oneanother and reap the consenquences. People hurt people. We can also lift eachother up and encourage eachother. We support and pray for eachother. We cheer and cry together. Grow and discover together.
Being stable and melded into a Church longterm is something I’ve struggled with all my life. It’s something that I’m working on and asking God to help me with. The Church we’re in right now is wonderful. I’m so thankful that God has put us there. The people are wonderful, encouraging and honest. We’ve been there for about 18 months and I know that this period of ‘honeymooning’ will come to an end. My prayer is that we’ll be able to see past that this time and last the distance; get through to the stage of mature, honest and loving-through-faults season.
How long have you been at your Church? Do you struggle being fully melded into a Church or is it a natural progression for you?
PLEASE NOTE: Quotations in this and other posts relating to The Purpose Driven Life (usually entitled Day:?) are sourced from The Purpose Driven Life book by Rick Warren unless otherwise stated. This is an independant study and is based on my opinion and experience only. Copies of The Purpose Driven Life book are available for purchase from all good christian books stores, including Koorong. The first seven chapters of the book can be downloaded FREE from Rick Warren’s official site here.