Acts 11:22-24 ESV
The report of this came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. When he came and saw the grace of God, he was glad, and he exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose, for he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were added to the Lord.
Quieten your heart and mind. Turn off all distractions and close your eyes. Put away anxiousness and listen. Bring your heart and mind into stillness before God. Set aside your agenda and opinions and reflect on God’s Words.
What do we know about the early church? What did their buildings look like? What was on their sign? How did they “do” church? How were their pastors selected? Who made the decisions? What denomination were they affiliated with?
Interestingly, we know none of these things. What we know are the essential things – they sang hymns, prayed, and studied God’s Word and the good news of Jesus Christ and the salvation he offered. How about the church today? What do we spend our time talking about? What is important to you in regards to “church?” Why are you a member of Timberlake? Is it because we have red carpet, padded pews, and chandeliers? Is it because we have flashing lights in the “modern” service? Do those things hold someone’s commitment to being faithful to Timberlake, Sunday after Sunday? Is it the worship, the preaching and teaching, the small groups, and fellowship with like-minded Chrisitan brothers and sisters? Is it because of the logo on the front of the sanctuary and the sign? What is essential for a church – to be part of THE CHURCH – the Body and Bride of Christ? Are you doing your part as a member of Timberlake?
Father, we know that one of Satan’s attacks to hurt THE Church – the Body of Christ, is through distraction and obsession over things that have nothing to do with true spirituality, salvation, and our journey in sanctification. Remind us to “remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose.” Fill us with Your Holy Spirit and faith. And by our love and faithfulness to You – with steadfast purpose- may many souls be added to Your Kingdom at Timberlake. Show me, Father, my part in Timberlake’s mission, to reach, feed and release people to be the hands and feet of Your Son, Our Savior, Jesus.