BE THE CHURCH, 12NOV
VBS scriptures still ring true…. Today as I put away 4-month-old VBS material I remembered that God provides, heals, forgives, gives eternal life, and comforts us…. But this is NOT JUST for us, He comforts us so that we can comfort others….
Initially my phone autocorrected to “He churches us so that we can comfort others…. And yeah, that’s true, God puts us in churches to help others. He “churches us” by surrounding us with HIS fellow children to help us and for us to help them.. “Be the church”…. I am NOT talking about the building but about church the faith community…. God wants us “churched” because as saved souls we are tasked to disciple all nations… Every week our blessed pastor always says “Go out and BE THE CHURCH.” And he means it! It’s because out there is where WE are needed, it’s where Jesus is needed! Our churching is not always for us to be fed, but for us to multiply the feeding… just like Jesus multiplied the loaves and fishes… Turns out that the ones being fed by us will feed us back too. We are blessed always by sharing HIS LOVE.
See the bigger church in Jesus’s frame of mind is not the building at all, the church is the people under the steeple and outside the walls….
It is easier to BE THE CHURCH when you ALSO allow yourself to “be churched” by God. Unless you allow God to place you where you are supposed to be in HIS plan, it’s going to feel like fighting an uphill battle (you know ultimately God will win anyway)… once you feel comforted, once you feel searched, churched, and saved by God, then it’s time to go and be the church yourself… You were saved for God and HIS glory, not yours… It would behoove you to tell others of God’s power to provide, heal, comfort, forgive, and give eternal life…. Likely, you are already doing this! And you likely don’t have to reach much further then using your own God-given skills, and if you are questioning how to help God, well just ask Him… I betcha HE already knows what skills HE wants you to use. At minimum, it’s not a stretch to be your own witness to how God has blessed you… Yes, others will be able to see the genuine God-workings in you.
Being THE CHURCH also means feeding the masses, feeding their souls and taking the time and opportunity to heal wounds… And trying not to inflict new wounds… And yet we are human, we make mistakes. Well, God wants you to “go and sin no more”… God can help you on all this, because God is ALIVE and working on YOU. Perhaps others seeing you repair your human brokenness will be inspired to ask God to work on their brokenness too.
Jesus and the whole church as His bride, will come together, and oh – that will be the most glorious sound ever, I betcha ALL the bells will ring then. Grab your flowers… Hear the bells…
Remember that God loves YOU so very very much.
PS… although you can witness and feel God’s love anywhere, I truly do believe it would behoove you to be in a physical church building-setting too (maybe a couple) with church people to help you be “churched”… because even though God works on you independently, having a net already set up will catch you both from falls and from overreaching leaps…. Personally when I started falling into Jesus’s arms and started tossing and tumbling in initial confusion, I turned to people who were already waiting with the net… My personal net wasn’t always in the worship service, but in front of the copy machine, in front of a repair shop, pushing a baby in a stroller, in discussions over sweet potato fries, in email chats, and even that day when I reached to my pastor it wasn’t over breaking bread and wine but pizza and birch beer…. So yes, “be churched” because Jesus can take care of you best with HIS woven net of family. Weave in for strength, then reach out to catch more fish. And those fish will continue to strengthen the net for all. I am ever BLESSED to be in GOD’S net.