why church, images from church, different church experiences, beauty at church

Why Church?

why church, why go to church, images from church, different church experiences, beauty at church

instagrams taken from @akvalley and @bryanjones

 

We are currently in the middle of a series at our church called DTR (Define The Reliationship).

Last week, in his less than endearing off-the-cuff manner, Taido told the story of how our relationship changed one night when we had a DTR.  We wouldn’t have called it that back then because Define The Relationship has come into existence as a phrase in the years since our courtship.

He was introducing the sermons of the next few weeks that it seems will be a series of definings.  Last week was a DTR with Jesus.  This week: DTR with church.

I honestly don’t know what will be said about this on Sunday, but I am looking forward to it because I have thought a lot lately about this question Why Church?

I can admit that I’m sure it is largely due to the fact that I am both married to and the daughter of a pastor (not the same one) that I cringe a little when people rail against the church.

It is kind of trendy to say that one likes Jesus, but not the church.  And I am in touch with the fact that many, many people have had bad experiences with church.  Myself included.

But still, I have church deep within me.  I love Jesus and I love the church.

However, when I try to put into words my answer to Why Go To Church, I usually fumble all over myself.

If you asked me today I might give some sort of rant about how many people have sacrificed their lives so that we can gather freely and study the Bible together.  Another time I might talk about how there are people around the world starved for the kind of gathering of community that we can’t even be bothered to get out of bed for.

I would probably sound self-righteous and my ears would turn red, and I would definitely not be coherent.

So maybe the best answer for me is this little list I made last November after hearing someone strongly say they did not need church.  I didn’t say anything.  I just felt sort of sad and defeated.  But I had been to church that day and I wrote in my journal this little list. I found it earlier this week and I thought it was as good an answer as I could give for the question Why Go To Church?

Things I did today at church that I would have missed if I had taken a pass this morning.

I sang and was moved to tears by the words of What A Friend We Have in Jesus

I prayed out loud for a sister in need.

I was prayed for.

Together with others, I lifted up a team of brothers and sisters who are heading to Kenya this week.  (This will help me remember to pray for them while they are gone.)

I had three different conversations with people (and heard about what is really happening in their lives) that I would not otherwise have seen or talked to.

I signed up to feed the homeless.

I watched kids act out the story of Daniel.

I witnessed a quiet man love on a lonely gal who needed a little extra encouragement.

I was encouraged.  I had the chance to encourage others.

I saw a sweet girl I know sing and play guitar for our middle school student worship.

This list is not at all a complete list of all that happens in and through a group of people who gather together in Jesus’ name.  It is not meant to be.

For me it is a small reminder, especially on darker days-like ones I have since experienced- when I don’t feel like participating, that I don’t want to miss out on what God is doing through his church.  I want to be a part of it.