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cropped-rose-4.gifMatthew 5:14-16, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven”

– Unfaithfulness –

A blind man was walking down a foggy street in London, England, one night, carrying a brightly shining lantern, holding if high in the air, as if to light his way. A young woman approached the poor old man and said, “Sir, it is obvious that you are blind, so why are you carrying the lantern?”

A tear trickled down the old man’s face as he turned in the direction of the young woman’s voice and he replied, “I realize that I cannot see, but I carry the lantern so no one will stumble over me.”

My beloved, if some born-again-believers in Christ applied this story to their own lives and witness, they would find that their light has been hidden “under a bushel” and someone may have stumbled because of it!

– How Long –

How long since you prayed for a servant of God
In some foreign land, proclaiming God’s Word?
How long since in love you have prayed for his health,
Remembered his needs and have shared of your wealth?

How long has it been since you knelt down to pray
For a friend serving Christ in a land far away?
How long since you wrote to encourage his heart,
To tell him you pray and are doing your part?

How long will it be
til the battle is done,
The praying is past, the victory is won?
It may not be long, but you still have today
To reach out in love as you faithfully pray.

– The Church is –

A Teacher giving knowledge to the spiritually ignorant.
An Evangelist carrying good news to the lost.
An Altar for the meeting of God and His people
A Servant whose field of service is the world.
A Minister bringing good cheer and hope to the lost.
A center for rallying all community forces for good.
A starting place where souls begin their journey toward eternity.
It consecrates the cradle … Sanctifies marriage … hallows the believer’s grave.
How then can I do less than support it?

Further thoughts:

Hebrews 10:24-25 says, “And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as ye see the day approaching.”

My beloved, the churchgoing has fallen on very difficult times. For some Christians it is a weak substitute for a picnic on a rainy Sunday. Excuses are as plentiful as quarters in the collection plate on Sunday morning. The fact is, many professing Christians don’t think church is all that important. They think they can be perfectly good Christians without being part of a local congregation.

However, the author of Hebrews disagrees! For one thing, our own spiritual welfare is not to be our only concern. We go to church not just to get but to give – to spur on other Christians to “love and do good works” (Hebrews 10:24). If we stay away, we may give them an excuse to be careless also.

On the other hand, if we attend with enthusiasm, we encourage other believers in their ambition to draw near to Christ. If we are faithful in meeting together with them, we will honor the Lord, grow in our faith, and give a strong witness to the world.

The Christian faith allows no room for rugged individualists. To have a fire, you need more than one coal. You also need a spark and a draft of air. One humble, open, involved individual – perhaps you – set on fire by Christ, can be the spark. And the Holy Spirit, the breath of God, may blow on that spark and set a congregation ablaze.

Fellowship with believers in Christ builds us up and binds us together.