Are you still going to church?

| January 26, 2013

1 Corin 3:7-18 1 Peter 2:1-3, 1 Corin 13:11, 1 Corin 3:1-3 Hebrews 5:11-14 Galat 4:1

Staff Writer - Carol Cato

Staff Writer – Carol Cato

The sermon at church was about spiritual maturity, we considered whether we were still babies in the church, or if we were growing.  I was very interested in what the Pastor was saying because earlier in the day I’d been talking to one of my spiritual brothers who revealed he wouldn’t be going back to his church as often, because he felt it wouldn’t teach him anything more.

He even felt he could have written some of the sermons being preached. So, to hear the teaching in church made me realise that God is telling us to buck up. My spiritual brother wasn’t criticising the church, he was simply pointing out that he was spiritually mature and could stand on his own two feet.  It was time to go and take the message he had learned, to the world.

Writing this blog has reinforced just how powerful the message was.  I hope I can do justice to what was said.

Ask yourself why you go to church? It was one of the questions the Pastor asked the congregation.  He said there are four reasons why people go to church; the first is the desire to fulfil their religious duties.  The second is more selfish, they want to be blessed.  Thirdly they come as an agent of the devil, to kill, steal and destroy.  Lastly, some come to worship and give not to take away; they come as builders, understanding that their walk is personal.  These people don’t follow the crowd; their mission is to grow spiritually.

I believe I have been like many of us who have missed the crucial point of attending church.  Church is similar to school, you go to learn and when you have learnt sufficiently you then graduate.  How many people do you know who’ve been going to church for years and have not graduated?  Are you in the same place spiritually, waiting to hear more messages?  You may be acting as a child, needing to be fed information. As Pastor says, our lives outside church has changed little, we’re still making the same mistakes, and then continually asking God for forgiveness.  Is prayer a priority? Do you love your enemies? Do you still gossip about people? In other words are you practising all that you’re learning from the church?

Photo courtesy rd.com

Photo courtesy rd.com

Church is also like a hospital, where we get healing and to learn how to fight off any illnesses that may come our way.  The doctors will advise on what medication to take, how many times a day, how to prevent it from happening again, etc.  So then ask yourself, why you are still in hospital?  The medication is the Word, and Scriptures that you should know in time of need.  Try and memorise scriptures, repeat them daily until they stay in your conscious. Jesus will help you to recall the scriptures when needed.

According to the Pastor’s message, spiritual maturity is a conscious decision we make, it doesn’t happen automatically.  Did you set a plan for spiritual growth at the beginning of the year? If you haven’t planned and executed in the first three months you’re likely to fail.

Also we must ask ourselves how serious we are about this journey. Many people get caught up in the ritual of religion that they don’t realise they’ve lost the purpose of going to church.   How many of us like my spiritual brother are looking to graduate and move on?

Do you realise you don’t have to attend church every Sunday once you have graduated?  When you’ve reached spiritual maturity your job then is to serve the Lord. Why should you continue taking up a space in the pews, your job should be serving the church on Sunday’s perhaps helping with administration  or out on the fields talking to those who are not yet saved.

What if Jesus came back today and met all of us sitting in church, how many would be taken? I urge you to take heed; the Word is all you need to grow spiritually.

Here are some guidelines on spiritual growth:

1. Choose a Bible Reading Plan that’s right for you. A plan will keep you from missing anything God has written in His Word. The easiest way to truly ‘grow up’ in the faith is to make Bible reading a priority.

2. Meet together with other believers regularly. The reason we attend church or gather with other believers (Hebrews 10:25) is to build one another up in the faith (Acts 2:42-47 and to develop our teaching, fellowship, worship, communion and prayer). Participating in the body of Christ is fundamental to spiritual growth.

3. Get involved in a ministry group. Most churches offer small groups and various opportunities for ministry. Pray and ask God where you should ‘plug in,’ It’s the people who really get plugged in that find their purpose and soar in their walk with Christ.

4. Pray daily. Prayer is simply talking to God. You don’t have to use big fancy words. There are no right and wrong words. Just be yourself. Give thanks to the Lord daily for your salvation. Pray for others in need. Pray for direction. Pray for the Lord to fill you daily with His Holy Spirit. There is no limit to prayer. You can pray with your eyes closed or open, while sitting or standing, kneeling or lying on your bed, anywhere, anytime. So begin to make prayer a part of your daily routine.

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Category: Culture & Society, Spirituality

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