Summary: Why are we in church? punch a clock, tradition, or to spend quality time?
It’s about time
I was thinking this week and trying to decide the most stressful time on any given week for Christians. When I started narrowing it down, I decided that I would be a bit more specific. I decided to actually limit the scope to be “active” Christians.
When I say active, I mean Christians that consistently attend church.
I also decided that the most stressed group of active Christians would be families with school age children.
That said, I decided that the most stressful time for “Active Christian parents” is probably Sunday morning when we are getting ready for church.
Now, I know I am sharing only my opinion and some of it comes form my personal experience. But let me qualify my thoughts just a bit.
In the past I was around for the conflict that seems to occur related to getting up, the clothes that should be warn, how long it takes to bathe, dress and eat.
Getting everyone in the car on time is like herding cats.
By the time we got to the church parking lot lives were threatened, and attitudes would easily be considered poor.
Getting to church often caused an interesting change in our facial expression and tone of voice.
And no matter how bad all our preparation went at home and on the way to church we are going to smile and look happy by the time we hit the church door. RIGHT!
I wish that I really thought that that sudden change was some kind of changed caused by God. Unfortunately, I believe that it actually comes from peer pressure. What would our church family think of us if they knew we didn’t have it all together, if we arrived disorganized and angry.
So we put up a neat façade that hides the junk that we don’t want other to see,
Let me ask you this question, “Why are you here in this worship service? Why did you get up early on a Sunday morning, maybe the only day you can sleep in, and get dressed and come to church?”
Is it out of habit. You’re family has come to this church on Sunday morning ever since you were a child and it’s just always been something you’ve done. So since it’s Sunday, you’re here.
Perhaps you’re here because you feel pressured to be here. I heard Tony Evans, one of the pastors I hear on the radio, say that growing up he was in church because he had a drug problem…he was drug to church every Sunday morning, drug to church on Sunday night and maybe that’s you.
Maybe it’s your parents, or a spouse that has compelled you to come by force, threat, or guilt. And instead of fighting it every Sunday you’ve decided to just come to church to avoid problems in your family.
Or maybe you’re here for the fellowship. You’re friends are here and so this is a chance for you to catch up on the week’s events, a chance to greet one another with a hug or a hand shake, and a chance to speak to some of your best friends. Being with friends is a very powerful reason to be in church.
Maybe you’re here because you’re hurting. It has been a rough week, and things aren’t going as you think they should, so you’ve come hoping to hear a solution to your problem and find some sense of hope and healing. That is a great reason to be in church.
Or maybe you’re just here to be entertained and you’re hoping we’ll sing a song that will take you back to yesteryear, or that you’ll hear me tell a joke or story that you can tell to someone else later in the week.
- What ever your reason, I’m glad you’re here and I hope you find what you are looking for. The church should be a part of your regular weekly routine.
… but if you are a Christian and that’s your primary reason for being here…
Then you’re here for the wrong reason…
If you come to church for any reason other than pure worship they are secondary. Most of them are valid motivators and there is definitely a place for all of our spiritual needs.
However, the primary reason for attending a church service should be to worship God.
Psalm 92 opens with a specific description of Sabbath worship. It is the only Psalm with that designation. In the temple worship happened every day.
It is good to praise the LORD and make music to your name, O Most High, to proclaim your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night, to the music of the ten-stringed lyre and the melody of the harp.
It describes worshiping God with words and musical instruments. It describes a celebration of God’s love.