- A mother was giving instructions to her three children as she sent them into Sunday School. “And, why is it necessary to be quiet in church,” she asked? Her son quickly responded, “Because people are sleeping!”
- After a church service on Sunday morning, a young boy suddenly announced to his mother, “Mom, I've decided to become a pastor when I grow up.” “Oh,” said his mother. “And why is that,” she asked? “Well,” said the little boy, “I have to go to church on Sunday anyway and I figure it will be more fun to stand up and yell than to sit and listen.”
- A little girl became restless as the preacher's sermon dragged on and on. Finally, she leaned over to her mother and whispered, “Mommy, if we give him the money now, will he let us go?”
Now, these somewhat innocent little jokes just give us a glimpse of the greater picture. People have a lot to say when it comes to church. What is it? Who is it for? What does it do? What should its purpose be? All of these questions are very relevant for our time today just as they were when the church was initially established in the book of Acts. God’s design and plan for His church has been consistent since this first call. The church is to be His hands and feet, continuing on in His ministry in and to the world. The church is to encourage and grow the believer in faith, make disciples, help those in need, and be a place of fellowship and community, among many other things.
How are we doing as the church? In the centuries and generations that have passed since its inception, how have those components of the church been carried out and carried on? It is a refreshing reminder to us that, even though the church is made up of sinful and imperfect people who can very easily make mistakes and mess things up, we serve a God who is perfect. As Head Pastor over His church, He makes up for where we fall short, His Word marches on when ours don’t quite cut it, His purposes, plans, and intent never fail. What a blessing that is as members of His church!
We can each be reassured that God’s purposes and plans for His church include you and me. It’s an honor to be a part of and yet God’s desire is that His church not be seen as a social club with exclusive membership, but a place for the broken, the spiritually hungry, people like you and me who need His mercy, grace, and forgiveness each day. We can be thankful for “church” as God intended it to be because through it, He desires to teach us, help us, and equip us as His children.