Are you one of those people who feel like there is no need for you to attend church. That you have it all figured out and you are more than capable of experiencing a healthy and righteous relationship with God; if so than this post is for you. I have often been confronted by individuals who tell me that they have no need to attend church or even associate with other Christians to live a righteous and godly life. I have had people tell me there was no need for them to go to church with a bunch of hypocrites. I often agree with them and tell them they are right and that they would find the fit in pretty well.Then I begin to explain why they are needed in the church and that they might be surprised by what they find. You see God's word tells us in Hebrews:
23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. Hebrews 10:23-25 (ESV)
You would think this directive from Paul would be enough for a believer as we try to understand the purpose in our gathering together, but we still fail to see all the value in it. When Paul wrote to the Thessalonias he was worried that the devil had weakend their faith and that they had again returned to their idolatry. When Timothy had returned his report was good and that there was a strong body of believers present and that even in persecution they were moving forward with the Gospel. The truth is the need for believers to come together in worship and study is to provide growth within the body of Christ. Paul explains in 1Thessalonians 3:9-10 the real purpose:
9 For what thanksgiving can we return to God for you, for all the joy that we feel for your sake before our God, 10 as we pray most earnestly night and day that we may see you face to face and supply what is lacking in your faith? 1Thessalonians 3:9-10 (ESV)
We are to join together so that we can supply what is lacking in one another's faith. Each of us alone has certain issues that we struggle with be it pride, envy, greed or gluttony just to name a few; the problem is when we try to face those issues on our own the devil knows how best to exploit them to bring us down so that we find ourselves ashamed and embarrassed by the fact we really don't have all the answers. Now when we join in unity and give thanks for one another bearing each other up in love and respect those issues that often control us are overwhelmed by God's Grace and Mercy. Which is what God's word tells us should happen in the lives of those who believe. Our fellowship whether it be Sunday morning, Sunday night, Wednesday or anytime two or more believers are together should produce positve things in the lives of those present. If it is not than the focus and purpose of the time is not to build one another up as it should be and the best thing we can do is avoid it. They are not gossip sessions but sessions that create relationships both for individuals and the individual and Jesus. I really hope that if you are reading this and find yourself struggling today that you have someone in whom you can confide. That will supply you with the pieces that are lacking in your faith. May the Lord God bless you as your walk in the light of His Word.