We are the Church
by Ruth Croft 21 March 2020
This is the first in a series of short thoughts and messages to encourage us in these days of uncertainty and concern.
We are the Church; let me just repeat that. WE ARE THE CHURCH!!
Our church buildings may have closed their doors for the moment, but it is worth reminding ourselves that our buildings are not The Church.
In normal times, our buildings are open to all. They unite us with our communities as we gather in them for services, meetings, coffee, etc. Sometimes we even disagree about them, but we are more than our buildings.We are the Church!
In the Bible, church is always a reference to people, not a place. The church is a body of believers that live out the Gospel in their words and actions.
In Ephesians 2:19-22, we read
So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.
In the coming days, when we will have enforced ‘time out’, we have an opportunity to ‘be the church’ to each other, to neighbours, friends and strangers alike. Pick up the phone, send a message (text, email or letter is fine). Also, uphold each other in prayer until we see the light of Christ in each other’s faces again.
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We come to you humbled by your great mercy and love. Your blessings come without condition, and you are quick to forgive us for our weakness and shortcomings. We find ourselves in times of uncertainty, not knowing what is to come in the future, how to plan, or how to prepare.
Lord, only you know the answers. Strengthen the links that join us to you and to each other as members of the ‘household of God”. Help us to trust you and accept your grace. Please take away anxiety and fear and replace them with the peace and comfort that only you can provide.
In Jesus’ name we pray, and to His glory.