There truly is no greater blessing than being able to gather with His saints on a Sunday morning. Communion perhaps, communion is so wonderful it often makes me cry, like one might cry at weddings, tears of sorrow, but tears of joy, too.
I really like this billboard, See you Sunday, but of course God does not just see us on Sundays and He does not just see us in church. He sees us all the time, at our worst, at our best, in church or not.
One should never wait for Sunday to praise Him, to read His word, to build intimacy with Him, to pray. God is with us always and He desires a relationship with us, one that takes some effort, like any other relationship. It can’t just be done on Sundays.
I may well be more keenly aware of what a blessing being able to gather together with others and worship really is. For some reason I have really had to struggle with that in my life. The first 18 years were spent with some pretty militant atheists, so worship in a church was out of the question. I did defy them a couple of times and sneak into a church where I was absolutely bedazzled. None of this slipping off to children’s church or coloring on the bulletin or something, I was absolutely enthralled as a child. God is real and other people know Him. It absolutely astounded me. It still does sometimes.
That suffering was a real blessing. I’ve never really understood, but to not know something, to have been deprived of it, really does make the heart grow fonder. I’ve never taken the ability to worship with others for granted, I never forget how blessed we truly are in the Western world.
And I never stop fearing the potential loss, not totally. I’ve seen too many churches fall apart, shut down. Also my mother lives with us now, so should I ever grow complacent about going to church, I always have her perpetual disapproval running in the background, reminding me of how much I’ve had to fight.
One of my fondest memories was being 13. I’d been sent to live with my dad and immediately joined a church, was baptized, went to youth group, sung in the choir. It was such a short time however, mere months really, but an experience that just left me longing for more.
Hubby and I met and married in a church, a church we attended, although he always less frequent. I taught Sunday school and vacation bible school, a couple of my kids went to pre-school there. Eventually the Pastor left, things changed and hubby slipped out the back door… and I soon followed. I’ve never been able to entice him back. He’s never completely left God though, not really.
I’m a floater, not a church shopper. I often visit churches, bible studies, other believers, as much as possible, perhaps to reassure myself that there are other Christians in the world, perhaps to create a back up plan. Perhaps just because I like people.
It’s been rough, I’ve quietly slipped out the back of a few other churches in my lifetime, for good reasons, and I’ve also faced a lot of family challenges, work challenges, community challenges. This area I live in has the second highest number of non believers in the country. Maybe that will change someday, but it’s not always so easy in these parts right now.
Once I worked 3 years of straight Sundays and had to duct tape my worship together, mostly alone. One year my husband was so fed up, he decided no one should go to church ever again, and I was discouraged by his discouragement and just let it go. 12 long months. God is faithful however. Just last week, hubby actually called me 6 times to remind me to go to church. Very cute, Lord. I was almost getting annoyed by the 3rd phone call until I remembered those old prayers and saw the sweetness hidden there.
As a good friend of mine just said, “Be blessed as you gather with other saints and worship His Majesty.” Amen! Wherever you are, wherever you worship, be blessed.
And trust in Him fully! Just like they say in the army, He leaves no man behind.