Friday, April 14, 2006

Quote of the Day- CEO Christians

"And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching." Hebrews 10:24-25

Christmas and Easter offer Christians (and sometimes the world) an opportunity to reflect on what God has done; seeing man's problem, coming down as an ultimate sacrifice, dying a criminal's death and raising triumphantly on the third day to demonstrate He is who He claims to be.

It also seems to bring out folks that must get in their biannual church visit in. Now, I know that one does not have to go to church to be a Christian. But my question is: why wouldn't you? The Bible seems to allude to going to church. It seems to be in the context of edification to the body. That includes me! That includes those I might be a blessing to with the gifts given to me by God.

If meeting together as believers is not important, why would God want us to? Would He want us to? I think the answer is yes, He would, if the church is a Bible-believing and growing (not necessarily numbers) in the Lord. I think it is also a training ground for Christians. Part of being here on earth means we must interact with different people. Yeah, that's right, people.

Socially interacting with others can be extremly uncomfortable. I would be satified living in a cave and not have to interact with others who challenge my faith, encourage my heart, give me a simple hug. Can't get one of those on a blog or chat room. Interaction is important. Is it my strong suit? Nope. Do I feel like going to meet and interact with people sometimes? Nope.

Would my Christian life be as effective or healthy? I don't think so. Not mine. If am not interacting with folks, I am very susceptable to becoming even more self-centered (I am very self-centered-I get glimpses of my heart sometimes) than I am.

If we don't use our arms or legs after a long time, they will atrophy (sp), shrivel up from non-use and they won't work right if we needed them. If as the body of Christ, we don't meet together, parts of our spiritual body will atrophy, shrivel up, and not work right when we need it.

I may be alone in this (I don't think I am), but I need to have people challenge me, not just intellectually (which can be done online) but emotionally, and relationally. While cyber-relationships can be fostered online, it seems important for us people to interact with each other in person.

That said, get to a church this Easter, reflect upon the sacrifice God made for us and the "Good news" of the Gospel. After that, go again. Find a good church to attend-one not afraid of preaching the Truth, one that will sometimes make you a little uncomfortable by what is preached. "Make a habit" of going rather than of not going as "some are in the habit of doing".

At least that is the way I see it,


Russ said...

I totally agree with you. On June 4th, 1979, I was saved. I was also married. Both my wife and I were agnostic. Now, she finds herself married to a Christian. This was difficult for her.I totally understand that. I attended chuch with my very good friend, John. Five years later, and after daily prayer, my wife suddenly gives her life to The Lord. I was very patient and just waited for The Lord to touch her spirit for those entire five years. For many years we did indeed attend church quite regularly with our children. We also went camping about 50% of these weekends.What is unfortunate is that pastors from each of the three churches told us we should attend church more and go camping less.One of the pastors was my cousin. Knowing my wife's spirit, you must understand her reaction to this. Not a pretty picture. Camping with many friends is pleasing to God as well. Family and friends together is a witness in itself. I am somewhat the rebel. I do as The Lord guides me even if seen as unpopular with others. For years, became friends with people living in broken down busses or living in the riverbed. Each Friday I stopped and talked, gave food, dog food ( some had a dog as their only friend)and a short witness as to why I was there. This became my church. There was a true need and I was there to assist in filling it. I did try another church in the high desert. I believe in the words of a pastor to be for all people.Talking down tattoos and piercings and the people who have them soured me on this pastor as well. He also happened to ask for a large "love offering" on one particular Sunday, due to church finances being too low.In the parking lot was his brand new Cadillac that he purchased on Friday. Am I being too critical? Possibly. Should I be going to church more often? Absolutely. I still take food, clothing, and sanitary supplies to people who have no home. This is my tithe.My experiences with individual churches just have my spirit telling me that I require a different church. Some day this will happen. Church is vital and wonderful. I just happen to find church in places that most others don't. The Lord speaks to us in His way that is individual to each and every one of us. It's like where I work. I have a very fine Christian Lady as my Instructional Aide. One day we were about to eat lunch.She bowed her head and prayed over her food. I was already eating.She asked my why I had not prayed. My response was,"How do you know I didn't". I pray before each meal, as I have since 1979. The Lord knows I thanked him.Just because I did not bow my head and shut my eyes doesn't mean He and I gave each other a "high five".

Tracy said...

I too, agree that it is important to attend a church. We try to go regularly. However, this doesn't always work out because we are gone, or sometimes, just lazy. We are still working on being more faithful to our church body. I do not regret all the camping trips as a child. We missed church when we were gone camping, but I would not change a thing. And, I do not feel badly that we missed church when we were camping. This is one of the reasons that I feel so blessed to have the kind of church body and pastor that I have. They do not judge us on how often we attend church. As a pastor, and a church family, they would love to see us there every week. However, they are simply thankful to have us there when we can make it. This, in itself, makes me want to be more faithful.

I think that it is important to go to a church where, like Derrick said, you hear the truth. Sometimes we need our toes stepped on. A truly loving pastor will tell you the truth even when he knows it will be uncomfortable. This is because he loves your soul more than your comfort. That describes my pastor. And if I ever felt offended by something he said, I could tell him. He would be open to hearing what I had to say. And I would be open right back.

Find yourself a God-fearing church with loving people who tell the truth. It is worth it.

Russ said...

As a parent who is many times so hard on himself for things he may have done better, this message from Tracy was a true blessing to me. It actually lifted a stone from me. Derrick, this is another reason that your BLOG was heaven sent. Derrick, I read with interest your writings about how you could live in a cave and be content with it. Ditto, here. We connect with people in times and places where God wants us to. You and I have a blast together. I love you, appreciate you, and love going to adventurous rides with you. Interesting it is, that I many times prayed for a perfect husband for Tracy. This, in accordance with my being a very protective dad. The Lord blessed me so much by having you as a son-in- law. You are a son, too. I know we got off to a rocky start, that being totally my fault. I am blessed to have a forgiving person in Tracy's life as well. Derrick, you rock! Top that, partner!

Derrick Bright said...

Wow, I don't think I can top that. I am very flattered. I am the lucky one to be married to Tracy.

We may not always agree, but I am glad that you are a part of this blog, and to my own life. Please remember that when we disagree and I offer a critique of your ideas, I still love you. :-)

Thanks for your blessing and support.


Russ said...

I do have one request. Would you accompany me on the Knott's ride tha I was chicken to ride? You know, that severe drop thingy. With that aside, I have a 'Russ Comment". Derrick, I truly love you and appreciate the happiness you gave to my daughter. As I said before, You Rock....