You’ve heard of #100HappyDays? Well, I stole the idea and adapted to fit my blogging schedule.
Every day is filled with reasons to be thankful. And yet the majority of my day isn’t spent being thankful. That’s got to change. God sent his son to save me - HUGE reason to always be thankful. And I’ve been freed to live a new life through Christ, released from fear, doubt, shame and self-reliance, equipped with love to serve others and blessed with all kinds of daily tasks and jobs to express my love. And that’s just the big stuff.
How about all the amazing little things each day? The simple, everyday stuff. The stuff I totally take for granted and just expect to be there. And yet stuff that so many people still don’t have - and may never possess. My God gives me so much and it’s time to praise him for all he’s done for me.
This is #100ThankfulWeeks to praise Him. I’m sharing one simple thing I’m thankful for each week. And I encourage you to swipe the idea and make it your own. And if you let me know when you post or what hashtag you use, I’ll be happy to share your posts. Because there can never be to much thankfulness.
Week 17: Church
How do I go about expressing my gratitude for church without becoming embroiled in the big debate: Which church? Because that’s always the question. Protestant or Catholic? Which denomination? Which synod? Which congregation? Which service? And then the followup discussion: Wrong denomination, wrong synod, wrong congregation, wrong service. And here’s 10 reasons why this church is the only RIGHT church.
Yet despite imperfect humans, church is an amazing miracle. The church I attend is imperfect and made up of imperfect people. Yet these imperfect people love each other - despite their imperfections. They build up each others' faith, they encourage each other, they welcome new people as family. They teach, worship, serve, share, forgive and pray together. Imperfect, yes, but united by a love stronger than imperfection. That’s the miracle of the church.
I don’t know about you, but I crave that kind of unity. I crave that kind of love. I don’t want to stand apart in isolation - I want to be with others who share my faith. I want to be taught, encouraged, built-up and forgiven. I want to serve with love and be surrounded by those who serve as examples of love. And I am so blessed to see all of these things in my church. Imperfect? Yes. But human imperfection can’t diminish the miracle of love and unity.
No human church has a lock-down on this miracle of love. It’s not exclusive to my church. It’s not exclusive to synods or denominations either. This miracle is the result of faith in the promise made to every imperfect human: “I am the way, the truth and the life.” Jesus has already made the promise and everyone is invited to believe it. And anyone who believes is now part of God’s church and that miracle of love - regardless of which imperfect human congregation we belong to. As part of God’s church, I now have the opportunity to love, build-up, encourage, serve, welcome and forgive others - everywhere I go. And everywhere I go, I get to be loved, built-up, encouraged, served, welcomed and forgiven. No matter where I am, I am no longer standing alone.
Thank you for making me part of your church, God. Thank you for the many wonderful people you have put in my life who share my faith. Thank you for their encouragement and love - and help me to share that same encouragement and love with others. Help me to be grateful for every opportunity to gather and rejoice. Rather than obsessing over finding perfect synods, denominations and congregations, keep my faith and trust in you, Lord. When all I can see is division, remind me of your promise and give me the courage to share it with others.
How did you find your church?