“Yes, I am staying.”
After watching a video, I found myself uttering these very words to myself fully convinced that I am called to stay — in church.
I am not foreign to the cycle of excuses we often throw people or ourselves about leaving church. These excuses span from petty grievances on what carpet color to use or justified cries on the hypocrisy that exists in a group of imperfect people gathering together.
Church is boring. Church music is not modern enough. Church is so uptight.
Or, me and God, we have our own thing. I can pray and worship God at home. I can do church with my TV.
Is all or any one of these excuses enough to send us out leaving what Jesus died for?
His. Bride. His. Church.
No matter how messed up she is, Jesus still loves her. No matter how damaged she is, Jesus still wants her.
No matter how unworthy she is, Jesus still thinks she is worth dying for.
If Jesus still loves His church with all of her not- so-lovely qualities, then why can’t we?
I am not making excuses for the church to be a passive, nonchalant body of Christ. Surely, there is much work to do in growing our church towards becoming more like Jesus; it is far from being complete. But leaving church is not the answer.
We need the church. The church needs you.
Going to church and meeting together in His name is not because we think ourselves perfect and sinless, but because we acknowledge we are sinners; we know we are in desperate need of help. Sounds cliché, yet it is true. Church is not there for those who believe they can handle themselves. Church is there for those who know they cannot do life on their own.
I challenge you to not look at people or programs or decorations, but to look at Jesus. If there is only one reason for you to stay in church, it is Him. He wants you to stay.
24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 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. Heb 10:24-25
The video is actually a promotional trailer for a book that’s coming out in October. I don’t know yet what the author has to say about this call for us to stay in church. I will be waiting for its release. But even before I read it, I know in my heart that we are called to stay and to press on with our fellow soldiers in faith.
If you check out the author’s website, he has a page that allows you to pledge to stay and it will create a marker on that page. If you are interested, you can do so. I pledged and created my own marker.
July 18, 2013
© 2013 Kezia Lewis. All Rights Reserved.