I recently gave a little talk to a ladies’ group who had just read My Life for Yours which is a walk through the rooms in the home. They asked for a talk that would relate to the book, so I did a walk through the church. I will break it up into a few short posts.
“Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord our Maker. For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture, and the sheep of His hand” (Psalm 95:6).
As we walk through the rooms in the church, let’s consider our duties in each room as well as the unwanted guests who may sometimes barge in. First before we get into the church proper, we have to park the car. So let’s start in the parking lot. Even here we have to compose our hearts and not get annoyed that someone took our favorite spot. Envy, competition, and criticism are the unwanted guests in every room, but they can even show up here in the parking lot as you see who’s late, who’s early, or whose family is in or out of order. Leave those unwanted guests outside.
Most churches have a foyer, and if you are a church member, you share “ownership” which means you share in the hostess duties at church. Even if you are not the official “greeter,” you can still welcome people and introduce yourself to the visitors. The unwanted guests her are shyness, rudeness, or thinking someone else will do it. If we are going to live for others, that means pushing through, especially if it gets us out of our “comfort zone.” Extend yourself to others. It’s much better for you to feel awkward than for the visitors feel awkward. Make it your mission to put them at ease.
The pastor’s office/study is probably not on your route Sunday morning, but let’s just visit it briefly here. Consider your pastor. Have you prayed for him this week? Are you praying regularly for his sermon preparation and delivery? If not, consider adding him to your prayers. He needs it! Then when you arrive Sunday morning, you will get the sermon you have been praying for all week. Unwanted guests here would be prayerlessness and inattentiveness. Every preacher likes a congregation full of people who are engaged and listening, asking questions and reading their Bibles. Don’t be the complainer who says you just aren’t being fed. As my daughter so aptly put it, there is a difference between not being fed and being on a hunger strike.