By Chris WittsTuesday 5 Mar 2013Morning Devotions with Chris WittsUncategorizedReading Time: 0 minutes
One of the great verses of Scripture comes from Genesis where we read “It is not good for man to be alone”. Adam was a lonely man … not because Eden wasn’t a beautiful place .. after all the food was good,animals friendly,but I guess at nights there wasn’t anyone much to talk with. So God did something about it,and He created woman to be his companion,a creature of his own kind,his equal. Adam and Eve belonged together,and so the first family came into being.
And ever since then,families have been around. You and I belong to a family,and belonging to a family gives us a sense of identity. And this is true whether you are the husband or wife,son or daughter,a maiden aunt or a second-cousin-once-removed. It doesn’t matter … its all being part of a family. When you belong to a family,you’re not an isolated soul,but one who is solidly in touch with others … a person,if you like,with roots and branches.
And families connect with other families to form communities,which will intensify this sense of belonging. In small communities,many families are related to one another by blood or marriage,so the bond among people is doubly strong. And when bonds are formed,people take care of each other,and help each other. And that’s good.
But as communities grow larger,and less personal,there becomes a real sense of isolation. Neighbours become strangers,and few people care anymore. Neighbours can go months,if not years,without speaking to one another. Instead of friendship,there is suspicion. Gone are the days when people “pop in” to say hello .. instead we upgrade our security. We’re not sure about opening the door anymore to strangers.
But did you know that the Church is a great place for people to feel they belong? The church,more than any other organisation,can give people a sense of belonging. The church should ignore the artificial boundaries that society has put up concerning race,colour or creed,or social status. It was the apostle Paul who said “there is neither Jew nor Greek,slave nor free,male or female,for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:28). The Church was intended to be one big happy family,united in Jesus Christ,under the Fatherhood of God. It was never intended to be an exclusive club,but a big organisation that embraces everyone .. its like the “whosoever will may come” fellowship of believers. I’m talking about the family of God.
This needs a push along today,for many people ask the question “why belong to a church anyway?” There are those who think the church,as a religious institution,is dead. Others say the church is old fashioned.. but I want to suggest this morning we should belong to a church because we want to be better .. none of us are perfect. Including the church. We’re all finding our way in life,and the church is a good place to learn how to live. It’s a home for sinners rather than a museum for saints. You and I belong there,with all our faults.
Have you realised the good work that the Church does? Churches are full of people who want to make a difference to their local community. The church provides the tools,opportunity and equipment if you like to serve God by doing good things for the community. You can never put a dollar value on that. So many people for centuries,have been building bridges to others in their towns and cities,in the name of God,bringing hope and often material help. We don’t set out to build walls around ourselves,rather to build a bridge of friendship and hope.
The church offers hope as well. And our world needs all the hope it can get! Christians try to love and care for one another,and that’s a positive thing. It’s the way Jesus taught,and millions around the world try to follow His teachings. There’s a striving after peace and good will,and social justice,where the world can be a better place.
Why try to face the challenge of life alone? God made us to be with others,and not to live in isolation. When we mix with like-minded people,we find answers to the problems of everyday. We face trouble whether we’re in the church or not. We may as well seek God’s help,and the help of His people. There is inside each of us a vacuum which only God can fill .. you’ll have a better chance of finding Him at church. Reach out to God,speak to Him and being at church will make it much easier. Do you want to be encouraged? Go to church,and listen to the Bible messages,prayers,and enjoy the music specially prepared. You’ll leave the building feeling more encouraged than when you walked in. It certainly won’t do you any harm! You may even find an answer to a question which has been haunting you for years..