Skin in the Game: Church
This week we’ve been focusing on the concept of “Skin in the Game.”
Today I think it’s important to stop and look at an area where every single Christian should have skin in the game: the church.
The Scripture is really clear on this. It is critically important for the Christian life for believers to gather together with other believers (See Hebrews 10:24-25, 1 Corinthians 12:20-25) for encouragement, strengthening, and care.
This shouldn’t be revolutionary, but in today’s society we have plenty of believers who think they are doing just fine without being part of a church. There are “nones” and “dones” who believe they can believe in Jesus but never have to interact with a specific group of believers on a regular basis. This flies in the face of Scripture that calls us to live closely enough to each other (believers in Jesus) that we can practice the “one anothers” with them regularly (see The 59 One Anothers of the Bible).
Now, I am the last person to tell you that you need to show up at 10:00 AM on Sunday morning to a building where songs are sung and a speech is given. I gather in my living room with other believers, sometimes with no real plan for what we’ll do when we gather together. But I know the people who are part of my church. They know me. We have access to each other’s lives and we gather together to strengthen each other.
To be fair, this doesn’t always happen in the lives of people who are part of traditional churches, either. While I know many wonderful people who are part of traditional churches who are meaningfully connected to other believers, I also know many who go to sing and hear someone speak. Their Christian experience is an hour on Sunday, instead of a meaningful connection with real believers.
So, my encouragement to you today is to be a part of a local body of believers. Don’t tune into a church half-way across the nation that doesn’t know you. Don’t sit around and wait for the perfect church (or even the church that isn’t perfect but checks all of your boxes). Go and be a part of some type of gathering where other believers gather and imperfectly attempt to encourage and strengthen each other. If you don’t have one of those near you, you should start one.
Lastly, don’t just go. Be a part of the church. Have skin in the game. You know you’re doing it right when you hurt when the people that are part of your church are hurt. You know you’re doing it right when you consider it your job to make disciples, not just the pastor or the pastoral staff. You’ll know you’re doing it right when you’ve stopped picking and choosing who you want to be your “church” and let God give you a love for the people in your spiritual family. You’ll know you’re doing it right when the health and the vitality of your church is your responsibility, not someone else’s.
When it comes to church, it’s critical you have skin in the game.
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