When you hear the word “church” what do you think of next? I know what comes to my mind: pastor, giving, singing, worship, teaching, tithing, Sunday, commitment. As someone who rarely missed a Sunday service in my growing-up years and now is married to a church youth director, I’ve had a lot of practice “going through the motions” of church. You would hope by now I’m a church expert, right? Not even close! To be honest, most Sundays my focus is not where it should be. I catch myself thinking more about what to wear, getting to service on time (which I rarely do), and making sure my kids are well-behaved than on preparing my heart, experiencing God’s presence, and being real with others about how God is working in the day-to-day details of my life.
This Sunday, Pastor Ron challenged us to move from a focus on the “what” to the “why” of church. He reminded us that when our focus is on Christ alone our church will move forward. As we read through Acts 2 we saw a church that met daily and shared life closely together, bound together by prayer and the study of God’s word. Those early believers shared their faith and many people came to Christ because of their witness. The Holy Spirit did just what Jesus promised; it transformed them from the inside out, empowering them to carry on His work and giving them the courage to be a witness for Him. As we commit ourselves to getting to know Christ and each other through studying and prayer, through involvement in small groups outside of Sunday morning, we will find ourselves undergoing a similar transformation. Church is not something we do; it is not even where we go; it is who we are.
– Faith Ralph