“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.”Hebrews 10:25, NIV
I live with chronic fatigue. Every ounce of energy I have, and sometimes more, is drained from me by the everyday demands of surviving this modern world.
The fatigue is not only physical. Once my physical energy is sapped, I run on emotional energy or adrenaline. If that is gone, then all that is left is God.
And this is a good thing. Because it makes me realise in a very real way that life is sustained by God (Phillipians 1:21).
But sometimes I worry about my priorities. Where should I put my energy? Should I put it into work and keeping myself fed, sheltered and connected with family? Or should I focus on getting myself to Church on Sundays, going to Bible studies and being involved in Church ministries? Am I somehow a lesser Christian if I don’t go to Church?
However, this struggle to find my priorities only lasts as long as my eyes are taken off Him and my mind concerned with law, not faith (Hebrews 10). For while human voices have quoted Hebrews 10:25, my God’s words have been very different.
When I took to Him my guilt, He said:
1Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.
(Romans 8:1,2 NIV)
Later when I, once again, attempted to drag myself back to church His Word was Ecclesiastes 3:
1 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
When later again I questioned this, having been challenged again by human voices, God simply said “Be still”…. Not just in my devotional time, but unexpectedly through two spiritual mentors.
"Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth."
(Psalm 46:10 NIV)
So, though a slow learner, I think I have got the message .
I miss the fellowship, the communal worship, but God has given me great Christian friends. I look forward to the day I have the strength to regularly attend Church, but I know my God is holding me close, so long as I keep my heart set on Him. And praise God for internet fellowship ….
This is not intended as an excuse for not attending Church… I hope you can hear how deeply I desire and value fellowship. Rather, I hope that this can be an encouragement to others who, though sincerely desiring to fellowship with their Christian family, are unable to meet regularly in communal worship.
“God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth."John 4:24 NIV