May 20, 2014

So you say that you are a Christian.


So what?

I can call myself a Christian too. I believe in God. I believe that there is only one God and that He is God almighty!
19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. (James 2:19)
So you say you go to church?
I go but I hate it. I do not see much of a point in going to church if I live my life pretty decently anyway. One of the reasons why I hate going to church is because it is boring, nobody talks to me and they all seem so hypocritical. They are always preaching about loving one another and being this “family”. Well, how can they expect me to be part of their “family” if nobody talks to me?

Yeah… maybe there is the occasional “hi, how are you? Good.” conversation, but it does not go any further than that. Nobody takes the time to find out what is going on in my life. Nobody in church cares.

Say what? Go up and talk to someone first? Find out about their life?
No way! I am an introvert and it would be SUPER WEIRD. I would have nothing to say. We have nothing in common. I never felt like I belonged to this church. I only came because my parents dragged me here and now church is just one of those things, you know?
I mean, I love God and all and He is great. I pray to Him when I am in trouble and He answers me, I think? I really do not see a need for church.

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The first thing I want to give me thought on is:

Why should we go to church? 

Fellowship and growth.
42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. (Acts 2:42)
In the beginning of the book of Acts, we see that believers gathered often. They would meet, fellowship, pray, break bread together and listen to important teachings. They devoted themselves to these things. They knew the importance of being spiritually fed and growing with their fellow believers.
25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. (Hebrews 10:25) 
Church is a place where we encourage each other; but what can we encourage each other about if we know nothing of each other?

I implore you to sit next to someone you don’t know very well and find out about their lives. Perhaps it will take time and at first it may seem like they do not want to talk but you could always ask them what brought them to church in the first place?

Secondly:

“I am just not the kind of person to go up to someone I barely know and talk to them first.” “I am still young, let the older ones talk to everyone”. “I just feel like I do not belong. Nobody talks to me.” “Bunch of hypocrites talking about being a family and loving each other”
19 We love because he first loved us. (1 John 4:19)
Does this verse mean anything to you?

The love of God captivates. It overcomes all barriers – cultural, racial and even awkward situations. It changes you. You will never be the same once God’s amazing love has planted itself in you.

Why? Because if you recognize the significance of the Cross and of the life of Christ, would you not want to share it with people? Will you not go out of your way to encourage a fellow believer who could be struggling? Or a person who has been going to church for years but is still in the blur when it comes to Christianity.

Will you really let fear and selfishness prevent you from sharing the greatest thing on earth with the “strangers” you see every Sunday at church?

In my opinion, the seriousness of God’s love and grace should change our mindset on how we approach people. To ensure that our church is healthy, we have to be able to share our lives with each other and pray about it together. If there are issues in the church, talk about it. Give practical solutions. Pray together for strength to overcome internal issues that could affect the spiritual health of the church. A church with issues is nothing new. Peter saw it coming long before.
8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. (1 Peter 5:8-9)
So let me ask you then, what does the love of God mean to you?

- Evelyn Tan

Image taken from:
http://www.radicallychristian.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/A-Christian.jpg

Mar 18, 2014