“Oh, how wonderful, how pleasing it is when God’s people all come together as one! It is like the sweet-smelling oil that is poured over the high priest’s head, that runs down his beard flowing over his robes. It is like a gentle rain from Mount Hermon falling on Mount Zion. It is there that the Lord has promised his blessing of eternal life. (Psalms 133:1-3 ERV)”
Division amongst believers is a topic that has been plaguing the world since ancient Bible times. I feel that churches have formulated a gang-like mentality that is all about repping a building and the people in it rather than the House of the Lord. There are so many churches in America yet so little coming together to make the world a better place. For this reason I am against the idea of “finding the right church home” (and this is just a personal decision for me so don’t stone me, I know how church folk can be).
When Jesus walked the earth He did not sit in front of the same group of people every day, preaching to the same “audience.” He traveled creating believers everywhere He planted His feet. And just like in modern times, religious people did not agree with his methods, which is a huge issue.
There is much division between religions, churches, beliefs rather than coming to a common consensus of serving God and wanting to spread His love. People look at you funny because you don’t go to the same Sunday School and church service every week or the same Bible Study every Wednesday. They consider a person like me to be lost because I enjoy hearing different messages to obtain unique perspectives on the gospel. But isn’t life about education? Learning innovative ways to interpret the scripture rather than simply agreeing with the same point of view each Sunday?
John describes his purpose in John 1:6-8 There was a man sent from God whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. I believe we all have this same purpose.
We get too caught up in ministry within the four walls of the church. Whenever you join a church, the first thing the new membership leader wants to know is which ministry you will be joining. There’s the usher board, the hospitality committee, the fine arts department, etc. All of these ministries serve the members of the church who are already believers. While believers need to be renewed each day, our main service should be giving non-believers the greatest gift of life, salvation. This should be our daily goal, not just a once-a-month visit downtown with the evangelism team handing out tracks. We should be a walking billboard for Jesus based on the kind way we treat others, lending a helping hand when we see someone in need, purchasing a sandwich for the homeless man on the street, or taking clothes to a young girl in hand-me-downs. This is the perfect display of Christianity.
Our traditions hinder us from evolving and reaching people where they are. We credit God on meeting us right where we are and providing just what we need. Why can’t we show the same mercy to God’s beloved children that He shows to us? Are we any more deserving because we sit on the same pew every week?
Some church-goers take offense when you choose a church over theirs. Is this really a competition? That surely is not how God intended it to be. I believe that if it were possible, God would be more pleased with us all gathering every day together in worship; the entire world as one big church; and that is how I believe it will be in Heaven. So let’s get some practice now. Let’s break down the division between Baptist, Lutheran, Catholic, the church on 1st St vs. the church on 6th and come together in harmony. In unison we will save a dying nation from eternal damnation. As one we will have a greater impact than divided.
-Renée Gibson Twitter: disclosednative IG: ms_disclosednative