Monday, December 19, 2011

Grateful For Fellowship

A very nice (pastor, pastor’s wife, youth director, pianist, soloist, choir, church member – take your choice) spent a lot of their free time to (plan, teach, train, implement, decorate, create – take your choice) our (Fall, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, Spring, Summer) (party, program, presentation, lesson, cantata, special – take your choice) and someone didn’t like it.

They didn’t like it because (it was too long/short, there were too many/few participants, it wasn’t like last years, it was too much like last years, there was too much/little rehearsal – take your choice).

Heard any of those comments around your church?  If you haven’t, you may not be attending regularly.  They come from people who were heavily involved before, and not so much now; those who were never involved; those who say they should have been involved but weren’t asked. 

Seldom do you hear such comments from people who were involved in any part of the event.  Those are the ones we should be looking to as examples!!  And maybe, just maybe, there’s a bit of Martha’s DNA in them that says, “We can do it!!” They can, too. 

Both Mary and Martha were set before us as examples:

And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her. [Luke 10:41-42 KJV]

There’s another story about the sisters we should heed:

Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary sat still in the house. [John 11:20 KJV]

Martha believed Jesus capable of saving Lazarus:

Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee. [John 11:21-22 KJV]

Martha also believed that Lazarus would be part of the resurrection.

Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. [John 11:24 KJV]

Jesus’ answer to her is what we should remember whenever we think anything in our church is not up to the personal standards we have set.  Jesus’ answer goes to the very heart of the gospel message, and Christians cannot get that message across when they are bicker and complain about trivial, not doctrinal, pleasantries.  Instead, we need to focus on Jesus’ answer:

Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? [John 11:25-26 KJV]

That’s why all the people in the first paragraph do all the things in the first paragraph – to bring the congregation together, hear God’s word and answer that question Jesus gave to Martha.

Believest thou this?  Do we live as though we know Jesus is the resurrection and the life?  That He is the light of the world? That He came to seek and to save the lost? That the seeds sown in these church-related fellowships are to bring forth fruit for His glory –- not for our convenience, not for our pleasures, not for our gratification, but for His glory?

If we did, we wouldn’t bicker about the small things, would we?  We would be grateful to God for the fellowship, see to our brothers and sisters in Christ for their needs and see that the good news is spread:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. [John 3:16 KJV]

If we believe that, tell the worker bees in your church how much you appreciate all they do for you – staff and members both.  Tell them you are grateful for their fellowship.

1 comment:

Thank you for taking time to read and comment on the blog. Comments should take into consideration this verse: Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. (Philippians 4:8 KJV)