Laura A. Diaz ____ Teach Write

TEACHER, AUTHOR, EDUblogger "I want to (read and) write books that unblock the traffic jam in everyone's mind." ~J. Updike

The Lie Of Consumerism Church Shopping~


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“Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us  encourage one another.”
(Hebrews 10:25 English Standard Version)

“No dejando de congregarnos,como algunos tienen por costumbre,sino exhortándonos unos a otros y mucho más al ver que el día se al cerca.”(Hebreos 10:25 La Biblia del las Américas) 

  


                   

This verse emphasizes for believers in Christ the importance of meeting together regularly.  And your local church is typically where this “meeting” will occur.  So, for a Christian, choosing a local  “church  home” should be an important and serious decision. More important even than your choice of a home, or vehicle, or where to send your kids to college.  However, we cannot approach our search  for a church home without having guidelines by which we are to make our choice.

Do you choose your church just as you would choose what movie to see or what new book you should purchase? Or perhaps, you choose it by a number of factors such as atmosphere, friendly people, music style, the level you enjoy or regard the staff, and of course, a good service?  You know, that sounds disturbingly too much like how we would choose which restaurant we want to frequent.   Honestly now, doesn’t it?  And sadly, doesn’t that sound like how the majority of us have begun to approach this issue?

      May I be so bold as to suggest that this “consumerism” type of shopping for a church is in fact – dare I say it-  unbiblical?  Choosing a church based on how awesome the music is, how entertaining the pastor, or how friendly the “fellowship”  –now, get your steel-toed boots on and hang on so I don’t step on anyone toes–  it is merely choosing your “entertainment.”   May I propose that your church should be chosen with the prayerful forethought:  Where and how does God want me to serve in the body?   

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The “church” is not a building or a place!  In addition, just as many have heard before, ‘Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian anymore than going to McDonalds make you a hamburger.’

I’d like to take it one step further, however. ‘Sitting in the air conditioned car that’s parked in your garage and listening to some good music or reading a good book, doesn’t make you a good driver anymore than attending  a church that entertains and makes you feel good, makes you an effective member of the body of Christ.’     

And, as followers of Christ, that is exactly what we are!  Or, should be. In fact, throughout the New Testament we are told that the “church” is the body of Christ.


 

“For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is  with Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free…Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.”(1 Corinthians 12:12-13, 27 ESV)

“Ahora bien, vosotros sois el cuerpo de Cristo, y cada uno individualmente un miembro de él.” (1 Corintios 12:27 LBLA)


 

Now that is “church.”  The “church” is the body of Christ!   Thinking along those lines, ponder that a body is a living organism.  And just as our physical bodies are made up of different parts such as; hands, legs, ears, eyes,  and little toe.   So is the body of Christ made up of different parts; made up of all those who have accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Savior.

Therefore, it is muy importante that we do not allow ourselves to be caught up in this world, this society of consumerism in which we are obliged to live in for the moment.  I say “moment”  because as believers we know that this is not our “home.”


 

But our citizenship is in heaven…” (Philippians 3:20 ESV)

“Porque nuestra ciudadanía está en los cielos” (Filipenses :20 LBLA)


 

       Choosing a church home for the reasons given in the first paragraph is making yourself comfortable and at “home” here.   It is basing your choice on what you determine you can get out of it,.  This is, at its root, self-centered consumerism at its finest.   In light of this,  as we seek a church home the foundation for our choice  must first and foremost be to fill the place in the body that God has planned for each of before we were even born.

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should  walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10 ESV)
“Porque somos hechura suya, creados en Cristo Jesús para hacer buenas obras, las cuales Dios preparó de antemano para que anduviéramos en ellas.” ( Efesios 2:10, LBLA)

This article is not written by a person that believes she has “arrived,” but simply written in love to facilitate and encourage growth for brothers and sisters in Christ ; whom whether they realize it or not, are part of a bigger picture, part of the body of Christ.


“Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.” (Philippians 3:12 ESV)
“No que ya lo haya alcanzado o que ya haya llegado a ser perfecto, sino que sigo adelante, a fin de poder alcanzar aquello para lo cual también fui alcanzado por Cristo Jesús.” ( Filipenses 3:12 LBLA)

*  Click on the accompanying link for  information on what to look for when seeking a church home: http://tinyurl.com/choosingchurch.  
 
Writing, to me, is simply thinking through my fingers. Isaac Asimov
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