Church. It deserves commendation. It deserves criticism.
It has done many good things…caring for orphans, starting hospitals, funding schools, reaching to the down-and-out.
It has done many bad things…focusing on good behavior more than the inward condition, elevating tradition over truth, twisting God’s Word for personal gain.
Whenever there is something wrong with the church, it can be boiled down to one primary cause…failing to connect with Jesus.
The church is a living breathing entity. It is like a building made of living stones, which are only secure when they are firmly connected to the foundation of Jesus. The church is like a living body. All body parts receive their instructions and identity from the head, where the brain resides. Without the head, a body part is lifeless.
We have tried for too long to do “church” without the primary ingredient, without the foundation. No wonder our churches are in trouble.
- Traditions have replaced truth.
- Hip décor has replaced deep content.
- Weekly sermons have replaced individual, daily Bible study.
- Shallow relationships have replaced meaningful discipleship.
- Numbers have replaced Kingdom growth.
- The latest trends have replaced an emphasis on Jesus.
We are capable of so much more! In Jesus Christ, we have been adopted into the most incredible family on earth. We are now sons and daughters of the Creator. We do not have to scramble around trying to make religion work, because we are children of the King of Kings!!
- When we truly believe that Jesus is God’s Son, He gives us the right to call ourselves God’s children. (John 1:12)
- When we show that belief by obeying Him, Jesus calls us His brothers and sisters. (Luke 8:21-22)
- When we separate ourselves from worldly beliefs, God gives us the right to call Him our Father. (2 Corinthians 6:16-18)
Notice that each of these privileges has a condition: belief, obedience, and renewing our thinking. These conditions are a steep order, considering how addicted we are to sin. But there is good news! When we come to Jesus in humility, He actually fulfills those conditions for us.
- He sends us His Spirit to help us build our faith. (Mark 9:24)
- His Spirit helps us to listen and obey. (Ezekiel 36:27)
- The Spirit also helps us replace old, human-centered thinking with new, healthy thinking. (1 Corinthians 2:12)
By RESTING in Jesus and allowing His Holy Spirit to work in us, we get to enjoy all the benefits of membership in the Creator’s family…
We have immediate access to God at any time.
We have a perfect Father, who loves us even more than we love our own kids.
We have a Father who wants us to sit and enjoy Him.
We do not have to please a stern slave master, because He does the work in us Himself.
We have freedom because we are no longer slaves to guilt, shame, depression, or despair.
When we realize WHO WE ARE in the true family of God, we are then free to be the church God planned for us to be. We must “BE” before we can “DO”. Our “DO” must be empowered by time spent “BEING” God’s children. It is only when we rest in Him, spend time with Him, and learn from Him, that we can “BE” His church.
No more lonely orphans…only sons and daughters living as the princes and princesses they are.
Imagine what the church family will do when it is bonded with its Father!!