1. When the practice of your faith is different from everyone else’s that you are seeing around you of the same belief system, then it causes you to question your salvation or adherence to the faith.
2. I am not trying to lay judgment on church organization as much as I am on the lack of unity within the church as a whole, and concern/care for others.
3. God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit are not your friends. This needs to leave your vocabulary. If you believe this then show me scripture that matches it. God desires a relationship with you, but the closest thing it resembles that we know of is as a Father. Jesus is never said to be our friend (our mediator, yes, but that doesn’t mean Jesus is a lawyer either).
4. God is Holy and Righteous. When we truly understand this in our hearts and minds then worship pours out of us naturally. If you are having trouble worshiping God then learn more about His holiness and righteous attributes and character. It also explains the necessity of why Jesus did what He did.
5. Thanks to my sis for hooking me up with this message from her church in Tupelo, MS. The sermon series is “Why we do what we do”. Great message worth listening to about our judgment of churches, what God desires from us in regards to worship, and some things they do as a church body that would be great if other churches took the same approach (notice I didn’t say “do the same things” but have the same mindset). I love the passage they used for the basis of the sermon:
Isaiah 1: 11-17; “What are all your sacrifices to Me?” asks the LORD. “I have had enough of burnt offerings and rams and the fat of well-fed cattle; I have no desire for the blood of bulls, lambs, or male goats. When you come to appear before Me, who requires this from you – this trampling of My courts? Stop bringing useless offerings. I despise your incense. New Moons and Sabbaths, and the calling of solemn assemblies – I cannot stand iniquity with a festival. I hate your New Moons and prescribed festivals. They have become a burden to Me; I am tired of putting up with them. When you lift up your hands in prayer, I will refuse to look at you; even if you offer countless prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are covered with blood.”
“Wash yourselves. Cleanse yourselves. Remove your evil deeds from My sight. Stop doing evil. Learn to do what is good. Seek justice. Correct the oppressor. Defend the rights of the fatherless. Plead the widow’s cause.”
If the church would pray through this passage corporately and individually. If we would do this consistently. Wow, what a difference it would make in how we are open to God using us for His purposes, will, and glory.
Classic song, but so true: I Can Only Imagine by Mercy Me
Love to you all,