Wednesday, September 28, 2016

A Bad Reason for Returning to the Institution: It's Where Your Extended Family Attends

It's completely normal for Christians to hope to meet with extended family members for church. After all, church gatherings should be much like family gatherings. A friend recently told me that when the church comes together it should be much like Thanksgiving afternoon, but with Christ as the central focus. I concur.

But what happens if your extended family attends an institutional church or churches? That is likely the case for most of us. I'm blessed that the vast majority of my extended family follows Jesus. This gives me great joy. However, all of them go to institutional churches of one flavor or another. None of them (zero) agree with me on what the model of church should be.

Should I, therefore, return to the institution to be with extended family? Should you?

In a word: NO!

If you do so you will be miserable. Worse, you may even end up resenting your family because of it.

You will be miserable because all of the reasons you departed the institution remain valid. It is a man-made framework that has no place in the bible. It is based far more in Rome than scripture. It is humans' ideas about "what works" as opposed to God's plan for His people. How do we know what God's plan is? Simple: look in the bible, especially the New Testament.

Please make time to see your extended family. Get together here, there, and everywhere. Don't try to recruit them to simple church life, but certainly discuss it if they are interested. Above all, do not surrender your convictions just so you can see them on Sunday mornings.

It's better to be a little lonely and be following God's path than it is to be with the crowd headed in the wrong direction.

1 comment:

Paul G said...

A BIG AMEN from me :-)