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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Singing to the top of my lungs & leaning on the everlasting arms

sing

What would you do if you didn’t know how to sing?  There would be no singing in the shower, no happy noise around the house, no entertainment in the car.  There would be no sayings like,

“He couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket.  Bless his heart.”  

 One time we were having a Ladies Day at church & I was asked to lead singing.  I was so excited!  My family was full of people who could sing well.  My uncle is a song leader at his church.

I asked him, “What do I need to do?  Which songs should I pick out?  I can’t even read music.  Is that going to be a big deal?”

He said, “I am going to tell you something a lot of people don’t know.  Our family sings by letter.  We just open up our mouths & let ‘er fly.”

Whew!  I’m so glad I got to carry on my family tradition.  Because that’s exactly what I did.  And I think it worked out ok.  I had a lot of fun, I know that.

We had a missionary come to church Sunday. He gave a report on work he & his wife were doing in Italy & Ukraine.  He showed one picture on Powerpoint & said,

“This is a time we were teaching the people how to sing.  They didn’t know how to sing church hymns.”

Well, don’t that beat all?  Since I have been singing in church since I was a wee thing, I can’t imagine not knowing how to sing church songs.  I remember thinking my job was to sing louder than anyone.  When I was 5 or 6 years old, I can remember my mama telling me she loved hearing me sing, but it was not necessary that I was the loudest in church.  Do tell.

keep-calm-and-sing-out-loud-8

When making trips to town, as a young girl, my grandfather & I would sing Old MacDonald, in his old Corvair pick up truck.  My grandmother used to sing to us kids.  It was mostly songs she had made up.  She would rock us & sing.  It was better than anything you can imagine.  She had such a way to comfort us young’uns.  After church on Sundays, at my Papaw & Mamaw’s house, one of us kids would grab a song book.  We would stand in the den, with my grandparents, mama, daddy, aunts, uncles, cousins, & one of would be the song leader.  All of us would sing our hearts out.  My brother would sing, “Leaning on Jesus Everlasting Arm” just like my Uncle Frank did at church.  Everybody would “request songs” & we would sing them.  Good times.

leaning

At church, there were Sunday singings after our dinner on the ground.  That’s where the men of the congregation would take turns singing songs.  We would go around the room & whoever wanted to lead a song could.  Young, old, it didn’t matter.  We just loved to sing.

Did you know one of the things we will be doing in heaven is singing?  That makes it mine & your responsibility to be a practicin’!

Revelation 15:3

They sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying: “Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God Almighty! Just and true are Your ways, O King of the saints! (NKJV)

It’s a known fact that everybody can sing.  Some may read music.  Some may sing like a bird.  Some may make the dogs howl when they commence to singin’.  Like us, some may sing by letter, but it’s all beautiful to God, when we worship the Lord.  Even though my mama thought it not proper to sing to the top of my lungs, when I was a young lass, that didn’t damper my spirit at all.  I still love to sing along with our congregation.  It’s hard to sing & not just feel better. And don’t think I have not taken the opportunity of teaching my kids & grandkids to love singing.  I sing to these babies & Mr. Sweetie Pants sings back to me.  He can belt out, “Jesus Loves Me” or “Rock Me Mama Like a Wagonwheel” in just a split second.

 

Blake & MikeyKade driving

I hope you are having a good week.  We are going to be having some cooler weather closer to the weekend.  Oh yeah!  I got to see all my grandkids this weekend.  We had a big ol’ time.  What fun things have you done lately?  I want to hear all about it.  But for now, I have to be going because I should be washing clothes.

 

 

photo credits: pinterest, keepcalm-o-matic.co.uk, fumctroy.org