Love your congregation
Pastor Mark Jeske
I’ve become a total perfectionist when it comes to dining out. There are so many entertainment choices these days that if a restaurant disappoints me with mediocre food, service, or ambience, I don’t ever have to go back. One bad experience and I’m gone.
What if the evil one prompts me to view congregations like restaurants? If he can’t keep me from going to church, at least he can ruin my enjoyment, keep my heart judgmental and proud, and whisper criticisms for all the shortcomings of the people, pastor, pews, parking, musicians, and even the restrooms.
Or is it just me? What’s the talk like as you and your family drive home after a service? Is it open season on the previous hour? You know, if you look for disappointments, you will always find them. The worship leaders are as flawed and broken as you are. Here’s a choice you can make: “Love the family of believers” (1 Peter 2:17). Perhaps God sent you to church that day not so much for your consumption but to be in a position to help somebody else.
How about a different conversation after the service: ask your friends and family what they loved . . . what built up their faith . . . a pleasant surprise . . . a story about a fellow worshiper . . . someone to pray for . . . happy memories from one of the hymns. The more you invest of yourself, the more you will get out of your fellowship.
If you listen for a spiritual insight, even just one, God will always provide one that you need.
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