Johnny's mother looked out the door and saw Johnny reading the Bible to his cat. She thought to herself, "Isn't that sweet? I will not disturb him and will let him continue to play with the cat." Sometime later, Mom heard an awful noise and looked out the door to see Johnny trying to force the cat into a bucket of water. She loudly said to Johnny, "Johnny, what are you trying to do with the cat?" Johnny replied, "I am trying to baptize him!" His mom said, "Cats don't like to be in water." Johnny replied, "Well, then he shouldn't have joined my church."
“And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.” Hebrews 10:24-25
It’s funny that we call it joining a church. That’s what we do, we join a body of believers, but it’s bigger than even that. We should be joining that body of believers out of obedience. We join our church, because God has led us to be a part of this body. Then we look at why God leads us here. We join a church to serve the Lord in this particular place and time. So many people have been disappointed by the local church. I would never discount a bad experience someone had at a church, because I know the problem. There are too many people in churches. People do it every time. Wait, you and I are people, so we’re part of the problem as well. However, we’re part of the solution as well. When the Holy Spirit works in our life, we can be part of the healing. We can express the love of Christ to a hurting heart. We can be used to “stir up love and good works,” but we need to be present. Sure, we can serve other places and worship other places, but are we present when we’re present? Are we present when we’re absent? I’m present when I’m absent when I pray for my church and keep in contact for the purpose of encouragement. To be here physically, but not engaged with others; no fellowship, no worship, or no ministry; is not that helpful. No, we need to exhort one another. We need to teach each other and encourage one another and be here for each other. “My church” implies that I’m invested in this body of believers. Invest today because “The Day” is approaching.