Why Should Christians Attend Church?

What are the pros and cons of not physically attending church services?  With virtual church becoming a norm in society today, is it causing complications for individual Christian living, for the community the church supports, or is it more of a building-use issue?  Are Christians neglecting to attend and support churches on Sunday, as well as other days of the week?  Do they need to?  If spiritual growth and awakening is what Christians want or need, should they get together in a building to worship and learn?  With the technologies that exist today, is church attendance really necessary? 

"Until I come,devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture,
to preaching and to teaching." - 1 Timothy 4:13 (NIV)

Society started moving to churches without walls during the late 20th century "Jesus movement."  That was not the first movement of Jesus Christ to question how to be a child of God and it will not be the last.  Jesus started His church with a wandering group of disciples, who later become itinerant evangelists and apostles.  Although the apostles moved a lot, they did work hard at  planting church groups.  Why? So Christ's followers (Christians) could increase their faith, worship, and grow spiritually together under the guidance and leadership of a selected responsible and mature believer who would teach God's word and demonstrate His love in a way they could easily understand.  

Excellent posts to read more on this include:

Overcoming Negative Emotions

nehemiah 8:10
In the world today, there is so much focus on negative emotions we inflict upon ourselves or force onto others (sometime knowingly and often unknowingly).  Modern marketing tells us we will be happy if we can just get a little more of something.  We are bombarded with psychological and societal methods for improving the way we feel.  If a method works,  it is only for a short time.  The emotions return and too often are more intense with time.  There is no better emotion-shifter than having a relationship with God.  

"But He gives more grace. Therefore it says, 
'God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.'  
Submit yourselves therefore to God. 
Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 
Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. 
Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, 
you double-minded."- James 4:6-8 (ESV)

This does not mean we will no longer experience negative feelings of anger, fear, loneliness, or sadness.  Instead, we will have a power to call on our God to will help us overcome the negativity in our lives.  He can replace: anger with composure, fear with determination, loneliness with His presence, and sadness with contentment.  Deciding to accept a relationship with God (instead of continuing in wordly indecision) is no guarantee that life will always be tranquil. However, we will know and experience the true promise of God's love. 

The Herald Angels Sing Glory to the King

The lyric and music video below is the most popular YouTube version of the much loved Christmas hymn "Hark, the Angles Sing" sung by a choir.  It even outranked the Mormon Tabernacle Choir version in views.  This might be due to background of the word slides look very Christmas-y and the music is also  traditional in sound.  It seems like an excellent choice for use in church and school Christmas carol sing-a-longs. whether it is part of a holiday service or performance.  It may also be useful in family gatherings or karake parties.  If you want to use it, be aware that advertisements pop-up before the last 30 seconds of music has ended.  If you want to a more angelic sounding choir sound with lyrics, check out the church congregation version on YouTube.  

"And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host
praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace, good will toward men."
- Luke 2:13-14 (KJV)


Trust God When Afraid or Anxious

If you are feeling anxious about things going on around you, then reach out to God.  You may be cautious during critical times, yet you are worried that something may happen to you or your family.  You may be witnessing things that concern you, which you never perceived as possible in the past. Do not fret, instead cry out to God and tell Him your concerns.  Do not fear, but have faith and believe that the all-knowing God will help you.  In a time and a way that is in accordance with His will, God will come to your aid. 

"What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee. 
In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; 
I will not fear what flesh can do unto me." -  Psalm 56:3-4 (KJV)

What seems like insurmountable adversity to you, is nothing compared to the power and might of God.  As His child, there is nothing that mankind can do to you without God's permission.  He is your shelter, your fortress, your deliverer.  Keep your faith in God strong and remember to give Him the glory for all He does for you.  Praise God for His deliverance ,even before you see the results.  Keep thanking Him and reminding Him that you are trusting in His promises and for His best resolution to your concern or issue.


Too Many People Are Going to Hell

Too many people are going to hell of their own free will!  So many people are experiencing hell on earth right now and too many of them are also headed towards eternal hell.  Can anything be done about this?

Some people are involved in violence.  A few want the violence for personal, profitable, or political reasons.  Others are part of the violence for pay, to loot, enjoy villainy, or want unmerited fame;  while others are just going along.  Violence is usually the product of hate, crime, or emotionally-driven unrest. Who is leading the way for violence?   It is a favorite tactic of the devil to destroy both those guilty of participating in violence and the innocent who fear the results of violence. Who can stop the violence?

"For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and 
hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us"  
- Ephesians 2:14 (KJV)

Some people are lonely or depressed.  For some, depression can come from actual circumstances, things going on around them, words wrongfully spoken, or deceptive thoughts and personal perceptions.  Why has depression increased?  What can be done to help overcome the depression?  Others  have no one to talk with, while another may have people they can turn to but do not feel they can do so.  Then loneliness creeps into their lives. often soon followed by depression.  When will the lonesomeness end?

"Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, 
that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost." 
- Romans 15:13 (KJV)

As a Christian, what are you doing about the people you know are headed for hell?  When you see wrong, are you retaliating and screaming back physically or are you fighting spiritually?  Are you telling people about Jesus and leading them in the prayer of salvation.  As a Church body, how is your group helping to: alleviate the pain of others, lead people to Christ, stop crime in your neighborhood, and fight falsehoods and the increasing evil in society?  Is your church bringing in sinners in to be saved from hell?  Or does it allow the sins to stay just to fill a seat or is it too quickly jumping on a social or worldly fads to mollify the ungodly? Pray through Christ for Godly direction to lead more away from hell and toward heaven.

An Attitude of Gratitude in Thanksgiving Blessing

Does your family have a specific prayer they pray over the Thanksgiving or holiday meals? Some say the Lord's prayer, others a traditonal blessing, while a few have a favorite family or religious recitation.  Many go even further by going around the table and  having everyone present take turns saying something they are grateful for in the current year (aka grateful round).

When I was a child, my grandmother prayed over most of our family gatherings.  I noticed when she would ask other relatives to pray, they often did a very similar prayer.  I guess that came form hearing her so often.  Even decades later, when the 4th generation offers up a prayer, although their words may be different, they end theirs much in the same way my grandmother did.  I am not so sure the exact praying words are as important as the attitude of gratitude sent towards God.  

With all that has happened in the past two years, we should reflect on the many blessings we still have over the holidays.  If you do not have a memorized  prayer or prefer to do a reading to express your gratitude, you might consider reading or reciting Psalm 100 (inset is ESV).  It is only 5 verses long, yet the words truly indicate a grateful heart.  This can done instead of a prayer, before the blessing, or following the "grateful round."

How to Find Refreshing

Do you believe persecution of thoughts and distortions of laws are becoming a concern in this world?  Are you feeling that the things are caving in on you?  Does the world around you seem angry, upside-down, or encompassed in chaos?  Are you in fear of what may happen to those you love? Do you feel like something is bound to break? Are you afraid that something will be you?  

"Repent, then, and turn to God, 
so that your sins may be wiped out,
that times of refreshing may come from the Lord," 
- Acts 3:19 (NIV)

Maybe it is time to turn from the world, repent of following the wrong things, and move more towards Christ.  Knowing you are forgiven of your sins through God's grace and Jesus's sacrifice is very liberating.  Following the teachings of Jesus Christ can also be liberating as it keeps you on the righteous and direct path rather than one that leads to personal destruction.  You can enjoy your spiritual freedom as God gives you emotional comfort that also leads to future physical well-being.