Why Church?

Many people go to church, thinking that it is the right thing to do, or that going to church makes you a christian. But while going to church is important for us to grow spiritually, that alone is not enough to help us continue to grow. We need more then just church. Saying “church is all you need”, is like going to a restaurant for a meal once a week, then saying that is all the food we will need for that entire week.

To go to church or not to go to church, is a subject that has soo many opinions. There are many many debates for both sides. At one point in time, I wasn’t sure either. Which ever I decided was based on a week by week personal argument with myself. We went to church as a kid, all the time. We grew up going to church every Sunday. For awhile I had stopped going; from when I was about 15 until I was about 24. For many reasons I did not think it was important any more. To me it wasn’t really a big deal. I knew God still loved me. I still read my bible and I still prayed all of the time. For me, that was fine. I was in a good place and I just did not have time for church. After all I was just a teenager.

Now days, I see things a whole lot differently then I did before. I do not want to live my life without God. Every day I face battles, we all do. But I know that there is a way and a reason to fight each fight with power, with hope, faith, grace, and the Love of God. I started going back to church to help me remember how to study the Word of God differently then I had been prior to that.

Recently, there have many people asking the big question of “WHY?!?!” Why do I need to go to church? Why should I? Do I HAVE TO?

A lot of people go to church for reasons that do not make a lot of sense. I have, also, learned that most people choose to not go because of a lot of unanswered questions. I do not know all the answers. No one does. Only God knows it all, but this is the thing.

Many people believe that being a good person, doing all the right things is going to save them. BUT: Adam sinned in the garden of Eden. He disobeyed
God and because of that disobedience mankind was separated from God. We received a sinful nature. It put us under a death penalty. Man became spiritually dead.

Doing all the right things, trying to live a ‘holy’ life is not going to change the fact that we are spiritually dead. The only thing that will change that, is Jesus Christ. God, Himself, sent His only begotten Son, so that, whosoever believed in Him would not perish, but would have eternal life. When we accept the sacrifice that Jesus paid on the cross and believe that God raised Him from the dead, we will be saved. Our spirits are reborn and through Jesus, we are reconciled to God the Father.
When we are born again, God puts His spirit, the Holy Spirit, within us. There is so much more that He does for us, there is just too much to go into at this moment; But it is through Him that we are empowered to walk and grow spiritually.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. JOHN 3:16 (NKJV)

I am going to start with a few things I do know, and a few things I have learned.

When we are spiritually ‘born again’, (When we met Jesus, and accept Him as Lord over our life) our new spirit within us needs to be fed in order for it to grow. That is why reading our bibles is so important; IT IS food for our spirit.

Many people, even now, still often refer to our spirit as ‘our soul.’ But I want to clarify what the soul is, so that, the rest of what is going to be said will be clear. Our ‘soul’ is our mind, our will and our emotions. So, we are a spirit, we have a soul and we live in a body.

As a new believer, our spirits are reborn, but our ‘soul’ (our mind, our will and our emotions) are still unchanged. Our old thought patterns, our old way of doing things, all those things don’t just automatically go away at once. They do not change over night, they take time. That is why you see different Christians in different stages of their christian walk. But Christianity isn’t just about being ‘born again.’ It is about being reconciled with God, our heavenly Father who created us, to have fellowship with Him. A fellowship that was broken in the garden of Eden.

Because of the finished work of Jesus on the cross, we are reconciled to the Father and through Him our relationship is established once more, but
just like any other relationship you have to spend time with that person, in fellowship with them, talking with them, listening to them, all for that relationship to grow. Then to continue to grow. You can not have one powerfully awesome conversation with some one and then be in an unbreakable relationship forever. That is not how a “relationship” works.

Then just like any relationship, we tend to start picking up characteristics of the person we are hanging out with. The more time we spend with Jesus, the more we start to sound like Him, think like Him, and be like Him. And I’ve got to tell you, Jesus is awesome.

If you are going to church, JUST TO SAVE YOUR SOUL, and that is it; You are missing the point.

If you are changing EVERYTHING about you, JUST TO SAVE YOUR SOUL, again you are missing the point.

It is great for you to want to save your soul, but going to church every Sunday, is not what is going to save it. Same as Changing everything about you is not what is going to save it either. A RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS; IS WHAT WILL SAVE YOU! It is also what will, in turn, change you, and it will also answer a lot of questions you never even knew had answers.

You see, being in a religion or being religious is all fine and dandy, but if you are not searching for answers and seeking a real genuine relationship with Jesus Himself, then you are missing the point.

That is why, this Christianity thing is so tough. People are caught up in who they NEED to be, or what they NEED to be doing. Having to give money every Sunday, having to never ever do anything wrong, being perfect and never stop letting the people around you hear about how not to live.THAT IS RELIGION! RELIGION WILL NOT SAVE YOUR SOUL! JESUS WILL!!

This thing, This GOD thing, is not about coming to church and pretending to be perfect. I say pretending because NOBODY, I MEAN NOBODY, is perfect. Only Jesus was, and while He was on this earth He faced all sorts of challenges that we are still facing today. The only thing that got Him through those challenges/trials, was HIS FATHER! Who is also OUR FATHER!

This God thing, is not about doing good things, or just being a good person. This God thing, is about knowing HIM and KNOWING HIS WORD. That is what can and what WILL keep us going. It is what WILL help us fight our daily battles.

If I was to stop drinking all together, not even a beer once in awhile, if I was to donate to charities every chance I got, went & helped at the soup kitchen every week, If I was to tell everyone I met that they need to go to church, If I did all those things, and went to church every Sunday; but I did not know God or who HE is. If I did all that, but did not know what LOVE truly was; then it is and was all for earthly “karma” . Those things, all those “good works” is not what we were taught, FROM JESUS HIMSELF, that is not what He taught us would save our souls. Is it???

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. JOHN 3:16 (NKJV)

NO, It was written, SEEK THE KINGDOM OF GOD, SEEK Gods Righteousness, then all these other things will be added to you. When you meet God, when you truly learn He is real, you start to change without realizing it. You start to not want to smoke weed every night, you start to not want to get drunk, you start to not want to cuss out the car in front of you who is driving SOOO DARN SLOOWLY. When we really meet GOD, we start to see the world differently. Our perceptions begin to change. All that drama that started last month, all those rumors you heard last week, all that gossip that was just so darn juicy, begins to become nonsense. It starts to become not important to you any more.

33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Matthew 6:33 NKJV

Knowing who God is, has changed the way I see the World. I know it has changed me too. But in a good way. Not even in a horribly visible way either. I am the same person at church, at home and in public. Personally I strive to make sure I am the same in all the places I go. Religion teaches that we can act one way at church, act another way at home, and a different way in public. BUT, that is not a sign of someone who truly knows GOD. Sure, I do probably cuss, outside of church. But I am working on it, praying about it, and growing through it. I know it is possible for me to quit cussing altogether because I don’t at church and I do not in front of “important” people. So my self control system is fully functioning, that means I know it is possible for me to take cuss words out of my vocabulary completely. Not because I was told to, not because God won’t love me otherwise, not because I am suppose to. But because I want to. One day I might have changed so much that I will know how to not ever cuss. That is one of my personal goals that I have set for myself. I am just not there yet. I am not perfect, I will never be perfect. But bettering myself is something I know God AND I are working on.

Working on becoming a better person because we want to make sure our soul is saved, or we want to make sure God loves us, is false. God loves us no matter what, the only way to be saved is through a relationship with Jesus. The Son of God, is our only way to reach the Father (God).

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. John 14:6 (NKJV)

I do not want to get to heaven and have my father tell me, I did not know Him, and He did not know me. That would be literally the worst thing ever. I want to know Him, I want to know more, and I want to know how to fight these battles I face daily.

The WORD OF GOD, has helped me through all sorts of things since I started to get into it and actually study it. Since I have started spending time reading it, I have learned how to not be so angry all of the time. I used to have a horrible anger problem. I have learned how to not be so “worried” all the time. Especially about tomorrow. Being worried about tomorrow is something I still face, it is a constant battle, but I know how to fight against it now. I have also learned how to not be so offended at every little thing. There is a whole list full of things I have learned, just in the last year of seeking God first.

So whether you “should” go to church or not, to me, that is not the big picture. It is not the focus of MY relationship with Jesus. I do know, that I want to be there, to learn more, hear more, grow more and feel more. I do know, that if you are going to go, do not go because you think you HAVE to, go because you want to. Go because God loves you. Go because we can feel His presence better in the Body of Christ. (That is the church) Go to learn why you want to be there. Go to learn why He wants us to be there. There is power in numbers, we are stronger against the wiles of the enemy when we come together. When we come together in prayer, things begin to happen. Change happens, revivals happen, chains are broken, doors are opened, Lives are changed!

Anyways, love you all. I hope and pray you all find a church home that promotes a real genuine relationship with Jesus, (not one that is focused on religion.) Remember to pray always and remember you are always loved. No matter who you are, or what you’ve done, or what you do not understand we are loved!

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Unique Advice ) Remember we can all stand to learn something New.

And those who know Your name will put their trust in You;
For You, Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You. Psalm 9:10 (NKJV)

I love those who love me,
And those who seek me diligently will find me. Proverbs 8:17 (NKJV)

Seek the Lord and His strength;
Seek His face evermore!
1 Chronicles 16:11 (NKJV)

And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13 (NKJV)

7Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them. Hebrews 13:7-9 (NKJV)

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Categories: Christian Faith, Encouragement, Life, Life Advice, Wisdom, Knowledge, & Understanding

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