Recently in our worship on Sunday evening, I listened to a prayer of a senior saint asking God to help us come to a time when our attendance was equal at all services. It’s been a while since I heard such a prayer and desire expressed before the Father. Why is there such a disparity?
What is it that makes one assembly more appealing to some than others? Is there something missing (other than people) in some of our assemblies that makes them less of a draw for the saints?
Isn’t it important for us to reflect “why do I go to some but not all of the services?” Is it a spiritual reason? Is it a stewardship thing? Is it that I feel that my needs are not being met? Did I worship, praise, pray, study, admonish, encourage, all that I needed to?
We all have busy lives. No on has a schedule less than crammed to maximum capacity. Yet, some folks still find time, energy, and desire to meet together for Bible study and worship every time the saints meet.
The writer of Hebrews told us to “spur one another on to love and good works.” He tells us to be careful not to grow derelict in meeting together. (He. 10:24-25). Paul reminds us twice, not to grow weary in doing good (Ga. 6:9; 2Th. 3:13). Isaiah preached to an obstinate people who had lost their fervor for service and worship to God. God’s words through Isaiah were stern and heartbreaking. God showed just how selfish Israel had become:
“You have not brought me your sheep for burnt offerings, or honored me with your sacrifices. I have not burdened you with offerings, or wearied you with frankincense. You have not bought me sweet cane with money, or satisfied me with the fat of your sacrifices. But you have burdened me with your sins; you have wearied me with your iniquities.” (Isaiah 43:23–24 ESV)
We cannot say that everyone who worships four or five times per week at the church building is a spiritual giant. However, knowing that it is good to be in the house of the Lord, shouldn’t I develop a desire to be there as much as I can? David showed a righteous attitude “I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord!”” (Ps. 122:1 ESV).
I echo the prayer of that older brother; that we would all desire to be with the Lord more often. Let us find joy and desire to be in the Lord’s presence.
“For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness.” (Ps. 84:10 ESV).
“One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple.” (Ps. 27:4 ESV).
Joseph D. Chase
North Loop church of Christ