So if someone was to walk into your church, as a complete stranger, on any given weekend, would they walk out and say “I came in contact with Jesus today”?
Why do we have church in the first place? Is it not because:
- We love Jesus
- We want to show our appreciation to God for Jesus
- We want to worship Jesus
- We want to be with likeminded people who adore Jesus
The list could be a page long but Jesus must be in each sentence. I think many people go to church for other reasons such as to meet a someone who might be marriage material. Or maybe people go to church because there is a great vibe afterwards and the coffee and donuts are good. Some people may go to church to be with friends. others may go to church because they feel obliged out of duty or tradition to attend.
Whatever the reason is, I suggest that if Jesus is not in the mix, then you may as well meet in a coffee bar somewhere, or maybe even a plain old bar. At Christmas time we see those saying come out which say “Jesus is the reason for the season”. In fact, Jesus is the reason for every season. Our lives should be so wrapped up in Jesus, that everything else comes secondary. I believe that any church that is worth its salt will have Jesus front and centre.
There are many ways that Jesus can be celebrated. The first is in the standard of the service. I am not a huge fan of this thing about excellence, because I have seen excellence become the reason for doing things, rather than God being the reason. but whatever we do must be done in such a way that shows we value people and their time. The second way we can celebrate Jesus is in the way we are with people. We need to be warm and inviting as a church and people need to feel that they are important. This can be shown in the way we greet them and deal with them. Genuine love goes a long way to settling people.
The next way Jesus can be celebrated is through the preaching of the Word. Sermons which do not make mention of Jesus and the work on the Cross, should be few and far between if ever. Every time we preach, we need to remember that we are preaching the Good News of Jesus Christ. So if you read this and realise that somewhere the focus has shifted away from Jesus, decide to change things and put the light back on Him. He is worthy of all praise and glory.