Sunday, April 14, 2013

To church or not to church?

Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
- Hebrews 10:25.

I became a Christian when I was thirteen years old.  Much of my time as a Christian I didn't really like going to church.  I don't really like church services.  I don't really like church programs.  I don't really like going somewhere to go say 'Hi' before the service and then 'Bye' after service.

Even though I didn't care for church in my youth, God gave me an outlet to still assemble with the brethren   I didn't realize at the time that i was going to church because Christian Brothers Coffeehouse wasn't a was a coffeehouse.  It was a place where Christians met and actually fellowshipped.  We were doing church without knowing it.  I like to fellowship with fellow Christians.   I just never cared for what most people call church.

I must be some kind of odd ball because most Christians I know love the church scene.

It was when I got married that I started 'going to church'.  I'd been on the outside for a long time and God whispered to me not long after Gina and I married and moved to Bowling Green, KY.  He said, I know you're okay outside the church, but your wife needs it.  You're the head of the household and you will go find a church for Gina's sake.

Oh crap!

I didn't like it, but I knew in my heart that if I did what I wanted to do in this matter I would be being disobedient.  So Gina and I started looking for a church.  We eventually found one and I met many new brothers and sisters there.  It ended up being a good time.  No, I never really enjoyed 'doing church' but I always enjoyed the fellowship.

Gina and I moved back to Gadsden, AL when Gina was expecting Katie.  We started attending the Vineyard here.  We've been here ever since.  The church is kind of an odd ball church.  It's good for me because like I said, I'm an odd ball kind of Christian.  Vineyard is filled with artists and musicians.  It's filled with people who love to worship God, hear God, and follow God.  The church like any church has it's faults (because it's filled with people), but it's a good place for me to worship.

There are still some days I don't want to go.  Some days I just want to withdraw, stay in my tent and rest on the outskirts of town...away from people.  I want to be alone in the dark cool cave of my basement.  It's then that I hear a familiar small voice.

"Daddy, are we going to church today?"

I roll over in my bed and cover my head as God grins.

"Yes, we are going to church, you girls get ready."

This is a confession from a man who's been a Christian for 41 years.  I often go to church because of obedience alone.  I often go to church as a sacrifice.  I don't like 'doing' church, but it's a wonderful experience to worship God corporately and then God shows up.  It's a wonderful experience to be with The Body and lift each other up, pray for one another.  Each week we enjoy God's presence together.  I find that when I gather with the saints on Sunday, I am more connected to God throughout the week.  

Come out of the cave David, I've got something for you!

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