From the Pastor's Desk - August 2015

From the Pastor’s Desk – On what are we focused as a church?  Sometimes churches focus just on survival – paying the bills and making sure that the facilities are in order. Other churches focus on comfort – am I comfortable when I come to worship? Is everything to my liking (songs/sermon)? Were the people friendly enough to me today? Still there are other churches that worry about relevancy – are we cool enough to attract persons A, B and C? Do we have the latest technology so that we can compete with that big church down the road?

Hopefully we are not focused on any of those things. Jesus told us that we are to be about two things, both as a church and as individual members of the body of Christ: the Great Commandment and the Great Commission. The Great Commandment is: Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength.  The Great Commission is: Go into all the world and make disciples, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you. So we are to be primarily focused upon two things as a church AND as individual Christians: loving God with all we are and out of that love being obedient to make disciples and help them to grow.  Anything else must be secondary to Christ’s command. 

So the question is, how are we doing? Does our worship reflect our love for the Lord or are we just going through the motions, or worse, skipping worship because we have more ‘important’ things to do?  Does our prayer life reflect our love for the Lord, or do we pray only when we or someone we know need something?  Do we spend time with the Lord in Bible reading or do we fail to read the Bible for any number of reasons?  These are hard questions, questions that make all of us uncomfortable because we can all do a better job.  But the bottom line is, does your life say that you love the Lord with all of your heart, soul, mind and strength?

And what about that other one, the one we feel even more uncomfortable about: are we making disciples? How do we make disciples? Disciple making is not going door to door telling strangers that they need to accept Jesus. (I don’t discourage that, but witnessing is just one part of making disciples.) We make disciples the same way you taught your children to play ball or learn to cook or mow the lawn.  You demonstrate before them what the desired result is. You spend time with them helping them with the task until they have mastered it.  And you probably enjoy the time together.  That is discipleship.  But we must be intentional about making disciples or we won’t.

Disciple making means to get involved in people’s lives, to love them enough to spend time getting to know them and sharing Christ with them through our life.  It means being able to share the hope that we have in Christ and to live our life before them, showing them what it means to live out that hope. It means to share with them how you are growing and how they can grow as well.  Discipleship is not an option if we want to be faithful to Christ. Remember, Christ said, “If you love me, keep my commandments.” 

We have a mission field right at our door (and inside our church). Pray with me that we keep the focus of LLBC on what is on God’s heart. I’m praying for you.  Pastor Keith

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