Baseball fans go to baseball games. Football fans go to football games. People belong to health clubs. People join churches. Why?
Fans attend games because they love the game. Being among a loud and boisterous home crowd conveys the excitement and fervor of the moment better than watching the game on television at home alone. Even gathered among a few friends at home is better than just watching the Super Bowl alone.
The whole purpose of Weight Watchers is to meet every week to offer one another encouragement in the fight against the bulge. Rejoicing with those who have made progress and comforting those who have had set backs is a prime reason for membership.
An individual can read the Bible alone, speak to the Lord in prayer alone, and sing praises to God alone. But the excitement of praising God with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs is so much better even with a few friends. Being with fellow believers to celebrate the victory our God has won for us over sin, death, and the devil is such an encouragement to us as we live our lives here on earth.
We as believers join a church because we as Christians are not meant for isolation. The devil comes looking to tempt us when we are alone. He knows it is easier to get us to despair, to worry, and to be discouraged when we are alone. The encouragement of fellow believers is a prime reason for having a church to call home.
One may feel at times that they don’t need the encouragement of others. The role God is playing in their life is good and they are happy. But another one of our roles as a believer is to serve one another in love. Our presence as part of a church is an encouragement to fellow believers. We can share how God is working in our lives, how we are comforted knowing He is in control of the world, how we have peace because we are forgiven for all we have done, and how we are sure of eternal life in heaven.
A piece of coal taken out of the fireplace and left to burn alone will soon grow cold. But those pieces of coal left together will burn bright and hot because of the coals around them. “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another–and all the more as you see the Day approaching” (Hebrews 10:25).