They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.
Acts 2:42 NIV
One early morning before dark, I got to church ready to help set up at our Viera location. I was feeling fully exhausted, rubbing sleep out of my eyes, and hoping the coffee in my hand would give me the energy I so desperately needed. As I rounded the corner, one particular man, a former marine and incredible follower of Christ, bellowed, “Morning, men!” I instantly shot to life. I drew instant strength from my dear friend.
People are gathering in many places to find life: restaurants, bars, running clubs, mommy groups, golf courses, theme parks, beaches, and so on. While it’s true these places can be fun, they don’t necessarily give life. True life comes from the Lord. Those places can only give true life if the Lord is found there. The Bible says, For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them Matthew 18:20. Whoa! Did you catch that? God actually shows up when you gather in His name.
God actually shows up when you gather in His name.
Life is a series of seasons: childhood, teen years, dating, being single, college, getting married, having children, and having grandchildren. My personal story is that through every season, I have had moments where I put God first and gathered in His name and other moments where I put Him maybe third or 10th or 99th and gathered in the name of something else, like security or fun.
There was a particular time where I was just dragging and felt like I wasn’t doing anything for the right reasons. I asked a friend to help me figure out what was going wrong in my life. He asked me, “When was the last time you just came to church to worship, took notes while the pastor was preaching, and just enjoyed the time you had with the Lord and with other people?”
I was low on passion because I wasn’t devoted. I was doing things for God but I wasn’t doing them for the right reasons. There have been times when I sat in a seat at church and looked at my friends and family and thought, “I could literally change the world with these people.” In those times, God was first. He was my passion. He was my everything.
As we enter this new year, remember that church is an opportunity to devote yourself fully to God, to gather together in a community of people, and to feed off of their strength.
Lord, You are my one desire. Help me remember that real life and fulfillment come from You alone. Stir up a fresh, fiery passion in my heart for You and Your Church so I can live life full of power for Your glory.
What is one thing you could do to go deeper into the community of Christ?
How can you bring life to others in your church?
Behind the Devo
with Pastor Matt & Pastor Keith
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