BIBLE READING 2 Tim. 4: 1 - 4 1 I solemnly urge you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus, who will someday judge the living and the dead when he comes to set up his Kingdom: 2 Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching. 3 For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. 4 They will reject the truth and chase after myths.
What does this passage mean to you?
BLOG: It's Saturday, and in South Florida, it means the weekend is in full swing. I'm at our local city festival to see my daughter dance today. Then I've got a wedding rehearsal this afternoon at 4 pm. I need to have the oil changed in my car sometime today. Anneka as a class to teach, and I've got to put the finish touches on tomorrow's service.
But I know that some of you are struggling to go to church tomorrow. "Something" has come up. Work happens, and life has a way of interfering with our schedule. (Not just on Sunday but every day of the week.)
Then someone, like me, comes along and quotes Hebrews 10:24-25 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
I know that verse makes church attendance seem like a religious obligation, but it isn't.
As a child, I developed a good habit of going to church. Mom and I would go on Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night. Then I would go to youth on Tuesdays and choir practice on Sunday afternoons.
One summer, my dad decided that we would spend time at grandmas house rather than go to church on Sunday night. After a few weeks of that, I respectively asked, "Could we leave in time for me to go to church tonight?" My habit was already established, and I didn't want to give it up. But why?
The church was a place that loved me. Even as a gangly teenager, there were people there who cared about me. They were investing their life into my future with love. They were making a difference, and I wanted that in my life.
The church was a place of community. Together we were unique and wonderful. I couldn't find this at school, work, or anywhere else. The value of that community was tremendous.
The church was a place where I grew up. The Biblical foundation for my life was a gift from people who answered the call to minister. Pastors, teachers, leaders, and friends made a significant impact on me.
So, if going to church tomorrow is more of a religious obligation than an act of faith, I'd bet money that you're not going to make it.
But if your church is a place where you can find love, care, community, and mentors who will pour their lives into you - then you're going to make it. Not just to church but in life too.
PRAY: Dear Jesus, I want to go to church tomorrow. AMEN