Why I go to church & what’s up with all the rain?

 

why go to church

 

If someone were to ask you, “Why do you go to church?” or “Why don’t you go to church?”  what would your answer be?  Some folks may not go to church because they have had a bad experience there.  Some may not go because they just don’t feel the need to.  Some may not go because they don’t know how important it is.  You may say I go to church because I want my kids to go.  Or some may go to church because that’s what their parents did.  Others may go to church because they are Christians & it’s the right thing to do.  Today, I want to talk about why I go to church.

First, I want to go to heaven.  With that, I believe Jesus created us to be social creatures.  He was with His friends, a lot.  He was a preacher to audiences of thousands on several occasions.  He fellowshipped with many & hung around with a group of guys, most of the time.  It goes without saying, we need to be with other like-minded folks.

The Hebrew writer gave a commandment in Hebrews 10:25

not forsaking

25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.  (NKJV)

What assembling was he talking about?  Worship service & whenever else the church decides to meet.   That commandment was given to me, you, & whoever else is a child of the Lord.  With that, I have a responsibility to the Lord to be with my group, the church, when they meet.  Not because the Lord is trying to be mean & keep me from sleeping in on one of my days off.  Or because He doesn’t want me to catch my favorite t.v. shows.  He knows us.  He made us.  He knows we are like those that made the golden calf to worship, when Moses didn’t come down from the mountain quick enough.  (Exodus 32) He knows we have to be reminded of His love for us & His purpose for us.  What better way than by taking the Lord’s Supper every first day of the week?  I Corinthians 11: 22-26

 

lords_supper

23 For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you: that the Lord Jesus on the same night in which He was betrayed took bread; 24 and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat;[b] this is My body which is broken[c] for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” 25 In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes.

He knows we need each other to help each other along.  Life is hard.  Sometimes we may not have a physical family on Earth, we can count on.  He knows we need to know we aren’t in this thing called life alone.  He knows what I need. Which is the company of others. He knows I am stubborn & if He did not tell me to do something, I might not do it.   One reason I go to church is because I want to go to heaven.

Second, I need the support of the church.  I need people who love me & know my heart.  I need people who I can count on in this ol’ world.  My church family is that.  Those are some good, salt of the Earth people I am with at each meeting.  If I need anything, they are there for me.  They are there to support me when things are good.  They are there to see me through when things aren’t so great.  I need that fellowship.

Acts 2:42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. (NKJV)

 We had a lady that came asking for prayer on Sunday night.  Her grandson prayed for her & his family.  It was truly God at work.  The young man was tearful & hurting.  He prayed a short prayer for help to make it through their hard time.  I know the Lord heard it.  Some of us didn’t even really know the grandmother or grandson.  But that did not stop us from standing in line to tell her we were there for her & her family.  That we loved her & that the Lord loved her.  And it don’t matter if anybody in that church house knew those people or not, they needed help & prayers.  That’s what we are there for.  When I am involved in church, I never have the feeling that I don’t have anyone to turn to.  Feelings of hopelessness aren’t common.  I know there are people in my life that care about me.  Those are people from my church.  As a matter of fact, I kinda like those people.  When I say kinda I mean REALLY love my church peeps.  Another reason I go to church is I need the support of Godly people.

Third, I want to help my family go to heaven.  I believe it is just as much my responsibility to raise my family spiritually healthy as it is to raise them physically healthy.  If I don’t tell my loved ones about the Lord, who is?  If I don’t try to teach my family about Jesus, they may just believe anything anyone tries to tell them.  Whether it be true or not.  And that’s not good.

Train+Up+a+Child~

 I go to church because I want my kids to learn about Jesus & become spiritually strong.  I want to give my kids the best chance they have at knowing the Lord & going to heaven one day.  And isn’t that all we can hope for?   No matter what is going on around me, I have to make sure I am a good example.  I can’t expect my kids to love the Lord, if I don’t.  I can’t be disappointed that my kids don’t study the Bible & go to God for help, if they don’t see me doing it.   Still another reason I go to church is to help my family go to heaven.

Fourth, I go to church because I NEED it.  I need to hear the preacher tell me what I should be doing & how Christians should act.  Not that I don’t know, but because I’m just human.  I need reminding, continually.  I need to see my brothers & sisters in Christ.  I need to feel the comfort & warmth of being with God’s people. I need forgiveness.  I need to remember what it’s all about.  I need to sing songs & pray prayers.  I need to listen to scripture read.  I need to be held accountable for my life.  I need my faith strengthened.  Just like the members of the early church had the same need:

Acts 14: 22 22 strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.”(NKJV)

Humbly, I need to remember Jesus died for me on a cross from my sins.  If I am not there, all these things may begin to seem not so important.  And these things are the MOST. Important. Things. Ever.  Last but not least, I go to church because more than anyone, I need it.

Thank you for listening to me tell why I go to church.  Please don’t think I look down on people who don’t go to church.  I’m just telling you, though, if you don’t you are really missing out.  The blessings you receive & the standard of living is like no other. On a random note-I cannot even handle hearing people say they don’t go to church because of the hypocrites there.  There are hypocrites that go to the grocery store & Walmart.  Does that keep you from going to one of those places?  I will tell you like I tell my kids.  Church is a public place.  Anybody can go.  That means there may be some hypocrites there.

My father-in- law used to always say this,

“You can either go to church with hypocrites, or you can go to hell with them.”

I don’t think I have to say much else past that.

I am so glad you stopped by to visit with me today.  I hope you are having a good week.  I hope it is warm & sunshiny wherever you are.  Because it is NOT here in northeast Mississippi.  However, I will choose to think of the long, stiflin’ hot, muggy, humid days of summer & thank the Lord for a little cold weather.  We have had our fair share of rain.

raining

I don’t even know what our weather is doing anymore.  Rain.  And lots of it.  Cray. Until the skies are full of fluffy clouds and bright sunshine again, I have to be going because I should be washing clothes.

You don’t have to go to church, you get to go to church.

photo credits: heartprintsofgod, http://www.cedarspringschurchofchrist.org,www.exclusiveblend.wordpress.com,pinterest

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My sweet helper & Someone who needs no help

neely cooking

My little girl loves to help.  She especially loves to help me & her Daddy cook.  She has become quite the baker.  She got cupcake pans, cake pans, and a lot of bakery paraphernalia for Christmas last year.  I have to say she has put it to good use.  She loves to help her Daddy in food prep for the grilling he does.  She has her hands in the muffin mix & can peel boiled eggs like nobody’s business.  I love having her around to help me out.

 Miss Neenee's cupcakes before going in the oven.

Miss Neenee’s cupcakes before going in the oven.

Do you know there is Somebody who does not need my help?  That would be the Lord.  You see, He is quite capable of doing whatever He deems necessary, without my input.  Sometimes it’s easy to try to compare ourselves to others.

I think, “What should I be doing about this or that?” 

You know what?  Jesus has it all handled.  There are times, I just need to have faith & sit back & let Him have his way.  Isn’t that hard, though?  When you pray & want a situation, a person, or a relationship, to be like you want it all to be- it may not always come out exactly like you had it envisioned.

So, I get to thinking, “How can I make this better?” 

Next, I may do or say something that doesn’t help the situation at all.

Or I may think, “I’m doing all I can do to be a Christian.  Why, then, are things going so great for this one over here, that’s well, not?”

Again, I need to remember, the Lord doesn’t need my help.  Just because I don’t see Him working behind the scenes, does not mean He is not.

The apostle Peter found out Jesus does not need our help either.  He questioned the Lord about the person He had predicted would betray Him.  It’s not said why Peter wanted to know who it was.  Maybe curiosity was getting the best of him.  Or maybe he wanted to help or protect his friend from someone.  Jesus let him know right quick that He had it handled.

John 21

20 Then Peter, turning around, saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following, who also had leaned on His breast at the supper, and said, “Lord, who is the one who betrays You?” 21 Peter, seeing him, said to Jesus, “But Lord, what about this man?”

22 Jesus said to him, “If I will that he remain till I come, what is that to you? You follow Me.”

23 Then this saying went out among the brethren that this disciple would not die. Yet Jesus did not say to him that he would not die, but, “If I will that he remain till I come, what is that to you?”

Peter’s attention needed to be focused on following Jesus.  The Lord had a much bigger agenda for Peter than worrying about who was going to wrong Him.  Jesus was pretty much trying to tell him,

“What business is it of yours?”

 I need to remember that.  I need to make sure my focus is on Jesus.  Not on who is wronging me, who has a nicer house than me, or who makes more money than me.  Jesus was trying to tell Peter & He is trying to tell me to have faith in Him & I won’t have anything to worry about.  When the worries & stresses of this ol’ world try to beat us down, we have got to remember Who we have on our side.  Even when we don’t realize it, He is working in our lives for good.

I am so glad you came by to visit with me today.  We have had rain, rain, and then some more rain.  But you know what?  I have seen some of the most beautiful rainbows…there’s a blog post for another time!  I hope you have a great week.  I have to be going for now, because I should be washing clothes.