Summary: What do we expect to find when we go to the House of the Lord? God has so much more in store for those who will reach out in expectation and receive what He wants to give.
Missing the Best While Looking for the Rest
Sunday, July 25, 2010 AM
By Pastor James May
What did you come to church looking for this morning? You got up this morning, knowing that today would likely be a rainy day because of the remnants of a tropical storm that were coming into the area, yet you pried yourself out of the bed, dressed and made your way here. It’s not always easy to force this old body of flesh to go to the House of the Lord, so there has to be a reason for you to go through all the trouble to get here.
Did you come out of a sense of duty? There are a lot of Christians who force themselves to attend church services because they know it’s the right thing to do. Week after week they come, hoping that maybe this time it will be a little different. Maybe this time it will be worth the effort and I’ll really get something from the Lord.
While we all want God to move upon us, meet our need and pour his blessings upon us, we must never think that this is the only reason we come to the House of God. We come to worship God as a body of Christ! That’s the number one reason for coming. We come in obedience to the scriptures that tell us that we are not to forsake assembling ourselves together as a church. We come to hear the word, to visit with the people of God, but mostly we come to worship God.
Did you come to church this morning out of pure habit? Even though I think that there aren’t many people anymore who would keep coming just out of habit, it still happens to a few. They have just gone to church on Sunday morning for so long that they just get up and come without even thinking much about it. They are as faithful in attendance as anyone can be, and yet they come, sit, listen and then walk away, and there never seems to be any long term effect upon their lives. Coming to church is a habit, just like getting up the same time every morning without even using an alarm clock. I thank God because you at least have a good habit, and I pray that one day you will come because it’s more than just a habit.
Did you come to church this morning looking for something from God; hoping and praying that the Holy Ghost would move and that He would manifest his presence in a powerful way? That’s a great reason to come to church! I believe that when we come to church we will get what we are expecting; and we will get out of it, what we put into it.
If all we do is go through the motions, that’s all we will get out of it. But if we truly put our heart and soul into worshipping the Lord and we have a true hunger for the Word of the Lord; and we come expecting God to move – then I believe that we will get just what we came for, and we will leave this place changed by the power of the God, taking the anointing of the Holy Ghost with us.
There are people who will come to church looking for many things. Some look for friendship; some for peace; some for healing; some for whatever food or drink is offered; some for a handout; and then there are those that truly come looking for Jesus to make him a part of their lives.
In the Book of Acts, chapter three we have the story of one man who fit a lot of these points that I’ve been talking about.
Acts 3:1 Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour.
Peter and John were disciples of Christ, and being disciples they had chosen to live in a manner that was different from anyone else. Their whole life was dedicated to following Jesus and becoming as much like the Lord as they could. Just like you and I, they had their daily struggles as they tried to become more like Christ.
Nobody ever said that being a disciple of Jesus was easy. After all, think about what you are trying to do. As a Christian, you have chosen to align your thoughts, actions and beliefs with that of Almighty God. Once you made that choice you set your face towards Heaven and you began to walk with the Lord. In effect, you are trying to become just like God, perfect in all you ways, while you are fighting the flesh, trying to overcome the world of temptation around you, and doing your best to use the spiritual weapons that God has given you to defeat the most powerful angel that ever existed, Satan, who became the evil god of this world. Is it any wonder then that you have such a battle? In fact, except for the power of God working in you, you wouldn’t stand a chance! Thank God that he is greater in us than Satan is in the world and that the Holy Ghost helps us to be over comers in this life.