4 Reasons You Should Let The Church Be Your Family (Even If They Mess Up)
I do life with about 10-20 Jesus loving people and there are moments when we have finished praying, or finished reading the bible and we are so deep in talking about our lives that I sit back and watch what is going on and analize. Imagine 15 people in my house at any given moment, who know the most intricate details of my life, what I have in my fridge, what I’m struggling with that day, whether or not I can pay my rent, even if i’m in a bad mood. They are ready to help in a moments notice. Imagine a life where you have a team of people cheering on your hopes and dreams, backing you up, helping you without even asking and pulling you out of the craziest situations life steers you into?!
Church is as far from a building as you can imagine, it is a revolution of family. An ecosystem of healthy people healing those who need it. I’ve been back and forth with myself at times in the past about why I should let people this deep into my life and why I should surrender to someones authority but I decided to try it before I knock it and heres what I came up with:
I Gotta Get My Crap Together First
Many people I talk to have a misconception that in order to begin a journey with God they need to get some things in order. My pastor puts it this way:
“Do you wash up before getting into the shower?”
It’s the same way with God. Beginning a journey with Him requires nothing from us except willingness to follow and perseverance. The family will be standing there like our Father with open arms waiting to help you through everything. Grace means that none of us ever deserved all of the good stuff we got from God, so we are willing to give it back to everyone. With that, we hold a responsibility to show you that church isn’t some place to correct anyones behavior, but to help you understand your own identity, to help you grow into who we were all meant to be. There’s no need to get anything together before joining the family, we’re here to work it all out together. No one can do it on our own.
My Business Is None Of Your Business
I definitely understand reasons for privacy. Privacy is good. But there is a very fine line between privacy and secrecy. God gave us the church not to consume it’s resources when we feel we need it and not give back, but to be invested in it. This ‘none of your business’ mentality stems from fear. A fear of rejection, or hurt. This can come from so many places in life, past hurts or rejections and the only way to deal with those is to delve into our church family and find healing from God. Fear is the exact opposite of faith and will therefor hinder our faith, so by you ‘keeping everyone out of your business’ and not letting the church be your family, the only person you are hurting is yourself.
I Got My Own Family
Your family is tight knit, they spend time together, they love each other, they do secret santas then buy each other all presents anyways. This is not a bad thing. Family is crucial and and vital to everybody. It is the centerpiece of society, however, the church is not out to compete or dismantle your family. The church is there to enhance what is family, and to introduce the love of God to it. Saying a family who is stable without God’s love is doing just fine is like saying going to the gym and not working out is productive. It is counter intuitive and just not true. Your family may want to love each other, and God will show them how to do it eternally, without restrictions or conditions.
We place no conditions on true family love from God. Meaning that no matter what happens, what is said there is nothing that can separate us, and nothing that can separate God from us. That is what the church introduces to your family. Forgiveness, healing, wholeness, peace, joy and freedom.
I Love You,man. But I Can’t Stand Your Wife.
Have you ever had a friend that was married? Or that had a girlfriend that you didn’t like or couldn’t stand? Yea me too! She always interrupts, she can have an attitude, she could say some things that are hurtful, she can be a hypocrite, she might even have done some things that will scar you for life! But you still love your friend; so you stay around, right?! And you would never tell him you hate his wife, right?
Well if you have some sort of bitterness towards the church, and you have some sort of disdain for the people in the church, deciding to stay aways from it because “they are hypocrites” or “you can have church at home” (which isn’t true at all); tis pretty much telling Jesus you love Him, but you can’t stand His wife!
“Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure”— for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints. Revelation 19: 7-9
You see all throughout scripture Jesus is called the Lamb of God or the Bridegroom to name a few of his functions. While the church (us) is called His body, or the Bride of Christ. So when we read verse we see that we are living life awaiting a marriage. Us as a collective church are waiting to be rescued, to have that “Nicholas Sparks” moment of all eternity with the divine Bridegroom who is Christ. By separating ourselves from the rest of the church we are missing out on that. We are missing out on the love that is eternal bliss, eternal perfection and harmony.
The Family Revolution
Church is no longer a building. It is people who are pulling for you, helping you get through life beyond the struggles and the doubts and worries. They will mess up they will let you down and they will get you p.o’d. But that’s the point. When family lets us down they are still family. Jesus said
“Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! 50 For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”
Jesus’ disciples were closer than his blood family. He made the church to be a literal family. For those who don’t have to receive, for those that do have to give. We are here to struggle together, to succeed together, laugh cry and live together. And the best part of all in my opinion, we are here to eat together.