Growing In Godliness Blog
“Attendance Attitudes”Categories: Author: Gary Watson, Fellowship
By Gary Watson
Hebrews 10:24-25: "And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near."
Note from this passage that we have a command to meet together as the saints. The reasons given for meeting are to stir one another to love and good works and to encourage one another. Also, other passages of scripture show that we are to meet to remember the Lord’s death and to worship God.
Some have lax attitudes toward meeting with the saints. They may believe that elders view those with consistent attendance at assemblies of the saints as better than those who do not assemble consistently. They may view attendance as a check-off requirement.
This writing does not address those who are home-bound due to illness or other medical or ambulatory limitations. This writing addresses those who do not see meeting with fellow Christians as essential to pleasing God. Some might say work schedules keep them from regular attendance. This writing does not address those who work and desire to be at assemblies. THIS WRITING ADDRESSES THE BELIEF THAT ATTENDANCE IS NOT ESSENTIAL TO A CHRISTIAN’S LIFE.
Let’s look at how the very first Christians viewed their assembling together: Acts 2:42-47: "And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God…”
A facebook piece pokes fun at lax attendance attitudes:
Borrowed and OUCH!!!!
What would it look like if the disciples valued worship and community like many believers do their church gatherings?
Peter - "My mother-in-law came in for the weekend."
Andrew - "I was up kinda late last night."
James (the son of Zebedee) - "Really needed some 'me' time."
John - "I was there last week. Besides, I'm not really being fed."
Philip - "Finally had a sunny day to hit the lake."
Bartholomew - "Had brunch scheduled with my Uncle Zed."
Thomas - "I doubt it would have been any good today."
Matthew - "I had to get my taxes done."
James (the son of Alphaeus) - "My dad (Alphaeus) wanted to fish today."
Thaddaeus - "The kids needed a rest day."
Simon - "I didn't hear my alarm. Because I didn't set it. Because I don't have one."
Judas - "Getting tired of hearing the same old message."
Going to church is not about checking a religious box off your "make God happy" list. It's about being invested in the lives of others; participating in the mission of the gospel; loving and being loved. Following Jesus was never meant to be a solo experience. Pull up a seat at the table. It is a level table and there is room for all of us.