It appears to me that professing followers of Jesus more and more believe that they can maintain their faith apart from being in consistent community with other believers. Belonging to a small group or worship attendance is considered optional. We busy our lives with so much activity; none of which is necessarily bad. But the frenetic nature of our lives robs us of attending to what is truly important – what has eternal significance. We may not even realize it!
I would like to encourage all of us to reflect on our calendars. That to which we devote most of our discretionary time is what is most significant to us. Will any of us at the end of our lives say that we wish we had prayed, worshiped and study God’s Word less?
Speaking of the critical importance of Christian community, author and Presbyterian pastor Eugene Peterson has said, “Love cannot exist in isolation: away from others, love bloats into pride. Grace cannot be received privately: cut off from others, it is perverted into greed. Hope cannot develop in solitude: separated from the community, it goes to seed in the form of fantasies. No gift, no virtue can develop and remain healthy apart from the community of faith. "Outside the church there is no salvation" is not ecclesiastical arrogance but spiritual common sense, confirmed in everyday experience.”
Hebrews 10:25 encourages us with these words, “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another – and all the more as your see the Day approaching.”
Keep the faith,
Originally from Huntington Beach, CA, Tony received his Bachelor's degree in religion from USC and his Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry from Talbot School of Theology. Tony loves spending time with his wife, Sheri, and their two sons and daughter (Bryce, Braden, and Brooke); cheering for the USC Trojan football team; and playing tennis.