“For her my tears shall fall, For her my prayers ascend; To her my cares and toils be given, Till toils and cares shall end; Beyond my highest joy I prize her heavenly ways…”
We would do well to carefully consider these words and honestly examine ourselves. Do we really love this church enough to shed tears for it? Do we mourn over the fallen? Do we grieve over indifference in ourselves and procrastination in others? What about our prayers? Do we spend much time in secret praying to the Father for the spiritual and numerical growth of this local body? Do we pray without ceasing for the harmony and purity of this church? As Bible teachers, are we praying for wisdom as we warn and teach every soul? How often do we speak privately to God about our leadership? Are we praying for their physical and spiritual health? Do we ask God to strengthen the shepherds of this flock and give them wisdom and humility? Brethren, if we’re guilty of negligence in prayer for this church then we’re slowly drifting into a state of slumber, which if not corrected produces a dead church.
What about our labor in the kingdom? Are we overflowing in the Lord’s work? Are we reliable in the work? Can we be trusted to complete an assignment? Diligence in the kingdom is necessary to prevent further distractions. A church that is distracted in her work is headed for discouragement, and the extent to which we love the Lord’s church is determined by just what we are willing to sacrifice in order to do the work in a timely and excellent manner. If we have failed as a church in either our message or mission, we have failed our God. Whatever our hands find to do, then by the grace of God let us do it with all our strength.
I’ve never been interested in simply giving people something to casually think about. Seems to me that just produces groups of people who are content with gathering dust while sitting around merely discussing future plans. What stirs me up for God is motivating people with the truth of Scripture, then seeing them get in gear because of their love for the Lord and His church. Let us all today examine ourselves with reference to our love, concern, and dedication to this local body. Singing the great hymn, “I Love Thy Kingdom, Lord” with the spirit and the understanding will go a long way in renewing our passion for the church. Since we are the bride, it’s time we adorn ourselves as such.
By Paul White
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