07
Jul
10

Each Day

They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity— all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved. – Acts 2:46-47 (NLT)

Shortly after I came to Lifepoint Church, I heard about a conversation (I did not personally hear) that took place between my Pastor, Jeff Kapusta and a visitor to our church.  Being impressed by what she had experienced during her visit, she said to Jeff, “This is wonderful!  When do you plan to move into your own building?”  I loved his answer then and I love it now.  He said something like, “It would be great to be able to walk in on Sunday morning and simply turn on the lights without having to do all the moving and set up we do each week as a portable church.  But, let me ask you this…What if we never build our own building?  Would you be okay with that?”  I always believed the implied question within Pastor’s question is, “Would we still  continue to be a church if we never have a church-building?”

I want to explore the question a bit further.  I seem to be drawn beyond real estate and architecture and physical facilities.  Is the Church (not just Lifepoint Church) only the church on Sunday morning?  Is it only the Church when it is gathered together?  Does the Church stop being the Church when it isn’t done the way “we’ve always done it?”  Is the Church 200 people, or 2000 people, or 2 people?  Do I believe what I believe about the Church, or have I merely come to accept what I have always known or been told about the Church?

This morning I returned to one of those passages of Scripture that is so familiar that in reading it, if one is not careful important matters may be missed.  As I did, two phrases jumped off the page and struck my heartstrings like a heavy-metal guitarist.  “Each day,” and “all the while.”

The embyronic, original Church did not gather only on Sunday, or on the traditional Jewish sabbath.  They gathered “each day.”  And it seems that they gathered both “at the Temple” and “met in homes.”  EACH DAY!  We are told that they shared meals together “each day.”  It can reasonably assumed that if they were gathering in one another’s homes and sharing meals that they were also sharing life, which means they were sharing not only each other’s “great joy” and “generosity,” but also each other’s troubles and concerns.  It was intimate.  It was personal.  It was relational.  It was family!

Then there is the second attention snatching phrase.  “All the while,” implies that what marked the early church as church was that it was a continual, consistant and unending process/state of existance.  All the while [continually] they were giving praise to God!  All the while [consistantly] they were enjoying the one another’s good will [best efforts and intentions and generosity].

And finally, and most importantly, there is a return to the first phrase, “each day.”  The whole sentence states, “And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.”  Please note what it does not say.  It does not say “Each Sunday people were saved.”  It does not say, “Each week our membership numbers went up.”  And please do not miss this….it does not say, “Each day our evangelism program paid off and people got saved.”  It says, “The Lord added to their fellowship…!”  Which indicates that they were being dependant on God and not on themselves or on their programs or on their talent and skill to grow the church.

So, I’m just wondering, as I am often led to do…is this what our present day model looks like?  Should this be the model for our modern church, or just the way it used to be but has changed?  Do we want to be a once a week organization, or is it important for us to return to being an each day, all the while, living breathing organism?  Is the modern church building because the Lord is doing the addition of souls (people), or are we dependant on a building or a building fund to make additions to our size (numbers and facility)?

These are the kind of things that God is causing me to wonder about more each day and I keep wondering and praying about them all the while…..!

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