And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
We learned from my brother-in-law last night that my sweet father-in-law has prostate cancer. We immediately tried to call my in-laws but could not reach them for hours. We finally got them late last night to find out they had been at church rehearsing with the choir…but we know they weren’t just singing. They had been being loved on by church family. For forty years this group of believers has loved each other through hard times like job losses, deaths, broken marriages and cancer diagnosis. They have celebrated weddings and new babies with casseroles and church showers. They pray for each other and for each other’s families and when we visit they love us like family too. So in this hard time… this church did what churches do well, they encourage and love one another with the love of Jesus. Once again God used the church to be His hands and His feet…His arms to hold and His voice to encourage us. I am so glad God has His people to be there in the day to day with my in-laws. I have no doubt that they will feel the love of Jesus daily through these people. I know, too, they have done the same for many others over the years.
Being part of a body of believers is vital to our ability to walk strong in the Lord. He created the church and He uses it to bless, comfort, and teach His children and He loves us through other people there. So often, I talk to sad, lonely, discouraged people who are trying to make it on their own. These lone rangers are easy targets for the enemy who is like a prowling lion looking for those who stray outside the fold. But not only are these lone rangers missing the encouragement of the church… the church is missing them. God gifts all His children with spiritual gifts to be used for the body of believers. (Yes, He gifted you!)
Life is hard and if you study Bible prophecy, it seems that it may only get harder. We need each other. God tells us to keep meeting together, to keep encouraging each other and all the more as we see the Day (of his return) approaching. Are you a part of a church? Do you have a group of believers to turn to when hard times come? Do you have a history with them so they know how to love on you? Do they know your favorite casserole? Are you sharing yourself and your spiritual gift with others? Don’t be a lone ranger…life is hard and God never intended for us to walk it alone.
Prayer: Father, thank you for your church. Thank you for loving us through the body of believers. Help me to be an active part and use the spiritual gifts you have given me. Help my children to experience the blessing of a church family and help me to help them see the perfect love of Christ among a group of imperfect people. As the years go by, I know I won’t always be there for them… but I know you can and will love them through others in your body. I love you Lord. Amen.
Tozer's Prayer. My Prayer
7 years ago