Making Room for God and His Church Day 1: How do you “Sunday”?
And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. (Acts 2:42, ESV)
On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul talked with them, intending to depart on the next day, and he prolonged his speech until midnight. (Acts 20:7, ESV)
Six days work shall be done, but on the seventh day you shall have a Sabbath of solemn rest, holy to the LORD. (Exodus 35:2a, ESV)
Am I wrong, or do you seem to feel the sleepiest you’ve ever felt on a Sunday morning? Most days of the week will find me awake before my alarm, which is earlier than a Sunday morning alarm, but oftentimes I find myself disturbed by that awful noise around 7:10am each Lord’s Day morning. It’s not even early, but, man, do I often feel like pulling up the covers and drifting back to sleep—until I remember:
“Do this in remembrance of me” (1 Corinthians 11:24, ESV).
If we truly care about the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross and His resurrection from the grave, we would honor His request as many times as we possibly can. We should make it our priority above the other temptations that pull us from this primary simple command from the lips of our loving Savior.
So, how do you “Sunday”? Is it another day crammed full of the never-ending to-do list? Is it a day set aside for some “me time”? Maybe you like to sleep in, make a big breakfast, and then spend the rest of the day doing the things you love most—fishing, shopping, golfing, watching your kids play ball, or reading a great book. Hey, those are all super fun activities, but they are not more important than first remembering the LORD. These are all self-indulgent activities, but meeting together (in person) with your local fellowship of believers to focus on what Jesus did for you pushes the focus from “self” to “Christ.” It’s prioritizing what’s most important, and how we spend our typical Sunday is evidence of the spiritual state of our hearts.
If you’re the man of the home, fulfill your leadership role and be the example for your family—Go! If you’re the woman and feel disheartened by your husband’s spiritual lack—go anyway. And don’t nag him about it either; instead, pray for God to work in the heart of your husband, while being consistently faithful to your church family. If you’re in a home where your parents are not interested in church—just go (if you have their permission). Your self-discipline to be actively plugged in to your church just may be the nudge your parents need to see their own need for Christ.
We are living in the era of easy churching—tuning in for a quick sermon while lounging on your couch at home or cutting the lawn. While Covid was in full swing, most of us had only this option, and with time it greatly affected the health of the local church. In short, the church as a whole was designed with fellowship as a mandatory function. Without being face to face with those we worship with, gifts are not able to be developed or used, and we lack accountability and connection. Going to church is a vital step for growth among believers.
Some days it may not be possible to attend. We get sick. We go on vacation. We are pressed with an urgent matter that needs our attention and find it impossible to attend. But brothers and sisters, let’s not make this a habit. When we consider the sacrifice of our Savior on the cross—paying an agonizing price for our sin—we must consider His words, “Remember Me.” He gave us the example of how to do this: by taking the bread and the wine each week we remind ourselves of His body given and His blood shed for us. We need this discipline to not only please Him but to give us a fresh appreciation for His great sacrifice.
How will you choose to move on from here? Will you make Him the priority and put Him in the place He deserves? You may have to make sacrifices in order to do this. We cannot change our past habits regarding our “Sunday-ing,” but we can choose to faithfully carry out the practice He set before us whenever we can. Nothing else is more pressing than this. May we honor Him going forward by saying yes to His command to remember Him in this way. And may we see this as a privilege, and not a chore to cross off our list. He is worthy, friends.