Sunday, October 4, 2015

Family Reunion

I did not have to preach today. This allowed Mary and I to attend church with her mother, at her church. Mary's mom has been a long time member of St. John's Lutheran Church in the North Hills of Pittsburgh. It has been a very long time since I have worshipped in any other church besides an Assemblies of God church. I must admit, I did feel a little uncomfortable in a different church setting. I should not have felt so uncomfortable, but I did. 
The songs were unfamiliar. The order of service was different from my home church. The preaching was not my style. Even the way Communion was served was new to me.
But there it was AGAIN! That same feeling, the feeling I had experienced in my son's church this week in Arizona. That emotion I can only explain as a sense of belonging to a 'Family'. 
The enemy of the Church desires us to feel small and powerless. The devil wants us to stay divided and weak. He takes pleasure seeing the Body of Christ broken, and separated into little, competitive communities. That is his strategy, to keep us fearful and disconnected.
The children of Israel felt that same intimidation when they spied out the Promised Land. The Bible records their heart emotions, "there are giants in the land... and we are like grasshoppers in our own eyes" Nu.13:33   But the real truth was, Israel was the giant, a giant to be feared by the enemies of God. 
God's Church is HUGE. The Body of Christ is a mighty army. We are all part of a family that can be found everywhere. Where is my church? My church, your church, is in West Mifflin, the North Hills, Arizona, Mexico, China, Nepal, Saudi Arabia, everywhere. 
Paul's epistle to the Corinthians says it very clearly, "The Body of Christ has many members, but is one Body..." 1 Cor. 12-14 
I just needed to go on vacation to be reminded.

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