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Ten Reasons for Going to Church

Ten Reasons for Going to Church

From an Interview with President Theodore Roosevelt

            Some people go to church regularly, some go occasionally, and others seldom go at all. How important is church participation? Are there good reasons that I should go to church? Actually, the Bible calls on believers to be the church, and not just go to church. But to effectively be the church, believers need to faithfully gather with the other members of the body of Christ for equipping and encouragement.

            Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th president of the United States, believed in attending and participating in church. In 1917, in an interview with Ladies Home Journal, President Roosevelt offered at least 10 reasons for going to church:

            1) “In the actual world a churchless community, a community where men have abandoned and scoffed at or ignored their religious needs, is a community on the rapid downgrade.

            2) “Church work and church attendance mean the cultivation of the habit of feeling some responsibility for others and the sense of braced moral strength, which prevents a relaxation of one's own moral fiber.

            3) “There are enough holidays for most of us that can quite properly be devoted to pure holiday making. Sundays differ from other holidays, among other ways, in the fact that there are 52 of them every year. On Sunday, go to church.

            4) “Yes, I know all the excuses. I know that one can worship the Creator and dedicate oneself to good living in a grove of trees, or by a running brook, or in one's own house, just as well as in church. But I also know as a matter of cold fact, the average man does not thus worship or thus dedicate himself. If he strays away from church, he does not spend his time in good works or lofty meditation. He looks over the colored supplement of the newspaper.

            5) “He may not hear a good sermon at church. But unless he is very unfortunate, he will hear a sermon by a good man who, with his good wife, is engaged all the week long in a series of wearing, humdrum and important tasks for making hard lives a little easier.

            6) “He will listen to and take part in reading some beautiful passages from the Bible. And if he is not familiar with the Bible, he has suffered a loss.

            7) “He will probably take part in singing some good hymns.

            8) “He will meet and nod to, or speak to, good quiet neighbors. He will come away feeling a little more charitably toward all the world, even toward those excessively foolish young men who regard churchgoing as rather a soft performance.

            9) “I advocate a man's joining in church works for the sake of showing his faith by his works.

            10) “The man who does not in some way, active or not, connect himself with some active, working church misses many opportunities for helping his neighbors, and therefore, incidentally, for helping himself.” (Teddy Roosevelt)

            One hundred and three years have passed since that historic interview with President Roosevelt. And church attendance and participation is still vitally important to faith development and Christian service. The Scriptures admonish us: “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching” (Heb. 10:25). (Barry Howard, Ethics Daily, Nov. 18, 2009)

The Fate of Sand Castles

            “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2Cor. 4:16-18).

            You've watched it, too. I know I'm not the first or only person who has  seen it. But there is a lesson in it that we both may have overlooked.

            There are some children on a beach. They're playing and giggling -- building sand castles all the while. They seem so intent on the project. You get amused at how meticulous and careful they are with crumbly corners and towers. The looks on their faces as they screw their mouths around and stick out their tongues make you smile. Their resolute concentration on the task is priceless.

            Then a big wave begins building and starts toward shore. But the kids don't panic. Instead, they do the strangest thing. They jump to their feet, scream with delight, and watch the torrent of water wash away their creations. There is no panic. No sadness. No bitterness. Even children know the inevitable end of sand castles. They are neither surprised nor angry about what has happened.

            You and I should be so wise. The stuff of this world is about as lasting and durable as children's sand castles on the beach. Yet we grownups can get so caught up in it, defensive of it, and depressed over the loss of it.

            God didn't create you to be famous, get rich, live in the biggest house, or drive the fanciest car. He created you for his glory. He put you in the world to love people and do holy things. Your destiny is not bound up in physical things, but spiritual. So living to be a hundred is far less important than living well -- even if for a short time. Beautifying your body is far less urgent than purifying your soul.

            Children know that their sand castles are brief joys destined to disappear with an incoming tide. So they don't fret as the waves approach. They watch their creations get swept away without shedding tears. Again, we should be so wise.

            Everything about this life is fleeting and perishable. The incoming wave of human mortality is going to sweep it all away. Like sand castles, nothing done for the sake of this world can last. Only what we do for eternity will survive.

            What would the loss of your job or business do to you? What if your house were lost to fire or storm? What if a strange pain sent you to your physician and led to the discovery that you have only a few weeks to live? These things really do happen to people, you know. We are all as vulnerable as sand castles.

            Life is God's gift. Revel in every good thing. But as you enjoy your creations in the sand, just remember not to get overly attached to them. (Author Unknown)

Test Your Bible Knowledge of What Solomon said:

1. “There are four things which I do not understand” _____, _____, _____, _____

2. “For four things the earth is perturbed” _____, _____, _____, _____

3. “There are four things which are little on the earth, but are exceedingly wise _____, _____, _____, _____

4. “There are four things which are majestic in pace” _____, _____, _____, _____

Upcoming Sermons

8/2/20 AM - The Idol of Safety; PM - “As We Sing Here On Earth” (A Sermon in Song)

8/9/20 AM & PM - Comfort from the Second Coming of the Lord (Parts One and Two)

8/16/20 AM - An Unhealthy Fear of God; PM - Job’s Exposé of Satan

8/23/20 AM & PM - God’s Will Be Done (Parts One and Two)

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