Keep asking the questions. Sometimes God will bless you with an answer. If you’ve been reading these emails over the last several months, you know I’ve been wrestling a lot with the question, “Where is the Church?”
I’ve been looking back over the last couple of years wondering why the Church hasn’t stood out more. I mean, a group of people who were there to serve, not only to get what they want, but to live life without complaining, would be noticed.
As Jesus points out, we would be as visible as a lamp placed on a stand in the middle of darkness. People would see them and say, “I want what they have.”
Since this didn’t happen, I started to ask, “Where is the Church?”
I saw a glimpse of the Church this past weekend at a funeral for someone we knew from our time living in another town 15 years ago.
The Church was evident in the community surrounding the family who lost a husband, dad, brother and friend. It’s a community forged through the years of doing life with one another. They’re more than friends. They’re family. They are brothers and sisters in Christ, there for one another through all of the ups and downs.
Many see the church in growth strategies or in a perfectly crafted vision statement. Their emphasis often seems on getting people to church and plugging them into specific ministries. The thinking is the more we grow as a church in numbers, the better we are.
And yet. That's not right. We are better when we mature and become more like Christ. This is what it means to be a healthy church, growing and maturing together to love as Jesus loves in the world.
Where is The Church? The Church is found in a group of people who are earnestly seeking to follow Jesus. They chose not to follow Jesus on their own. Instead, they are sharing their lives with one another.
Do you have a close group of friends, or a community, who you have chosen to follow Jesus with? Do they have permission to speak into your life on anything? Are you willing to drop everything with one phone call or text to go and be with them?