Your Presence Is Important
Nancy and I snuck into the balcony a few minutes before church started on New Year’s Eve. The snow and frigid cold convinced us to stay close to home on my Sunday of vacation. Actually, there is no place we would rather worship than First Baptist Church in Weatherford. I enjoyed the perspective from up top. I enjoyed the music and the preaching. I enjoyed being surrounded by people. The combining of both worship services resulted in a full house even on a cold holiday.
There is much to be said for being part of a crowd. Yogi Berra was quoted as saying that no one ever attended a certain club anymore because it was too crowded. He was mistaken in his conclusion. So are you, if you decide your attendance is not that big of a deal. Your presence at church can be so encouraging to others who also come. Your absence from church can be somewhat discouraging to those who do come.
If you want to make a difference in the world during this new year, why not begin by showing up for church? Your presence in Worship and Life Group on Sunday mornings will bless others and will bless you. Your presence in The Gathering service on Wednesday nights will bless others and will bless you. Don’t think in terms of “What’s in it for me?” Think in terms of “How can I encourage others?”
There is a definite “consumer mentality” among many who make up the church. They seem to be looking for the best deal in the areas that only apply to them. Christians pick and choose what they participate in according to what “meets their needs.” If what is offered is not the bullseye of what they want, they opt out. They forget about their responsibility to “encourage one another” as they focus on themselves. How unlike Jesus.
As we begin this new year, let me remind you again that life is not about you. If you live a life of giving, God will make sure you are given to. If you live a life of taking, you will not enjoy God’s blessing. Following Christ exceeds, but does not bypass, attending the local church.