Last week I met a nice couple down on their luck. They were struggling to make ends meet and needed help with gas money. Later in the conversation I learned that he needed tools so he could get a job and go to work at a local garage. After much prayer and discussion I decided that this was a hand up so we purchased hundreds of dollars of tools to help him on his way.
During the conversation I asked about his relationship with God. He inforned me that it was good but that he did not go to church. My guess is he is like many believers around the age of 30. They believe in God. They pray as needed. They try to be decent people. They do not go to church.
I know for a fact that the behavior of church going people drives many people out of the institution. I also know that people looking for a reason to quit can find plenty. Even so, there is one very practical concern which needs to be addressed. If no one goes to church where will people in a tight spot go for help? Why is it that the church is viewed as a place to get aid (and we are called daily for help with bills, mortgage and other needs) but not as a place to join? As our society rapidly de-churchifies we are creating a new situation with serious problems. Being right with God as an individual is not the Biblical model. We are called to be the people of God in community and faith and worship and service. Churches will be places to get help only as long as churches are communities that give help. We need more lovers and givers here. We have a steady supply of needers and receivers. For the sake of people like that nice young couple down on their luck I hope peole begin to commit in faith to God and His church.