Sunday, March 9, 2014

A Perfect Church

   Over two years ago I wrote a blog post about A Christian Home. I was inspired by the description of a nearly perfect home to turn our attention to the only One who is truly perfect. After quoting a verse from the hymn by Barbara Hart with the same title (A Christian Home), I wrote:

   "God in his word speaks to every person as an individual, regardless of his circumstances.  We desire to have Christian homes, but the first thing is to have Christ and to be Christ's ourselves.  I thank God that Christianity is not dependent upon having a Christian home, Christian neighbors, or a Christian nation.

   "Too often, while looking to have perfection in our surroundings, we fail to overcome in the little things of life.  Someone else becomes impatient in turmoil, and we get discouraged.  Someone else fails to remain calm and courageous in a time of trouble, and we are disgruntled.  Those in our home don't seem to find any joy in serving others, and so we excuse ourselves for being the same way ~ and we wonder what happened to love in the days dark and grim.

   "The trouble is that we are looking too much for results and have lost our focus on the Savior. Oh, to maintain high aspirations and to expect great things from God, including great changes in ourselves and our family, without taking our eyes off the one and only, the Lord Jesus Christ!

   "None of us is without sin, and no family is perfect. Some are beautiful and worthy of imitation, but all have their blemishes. If we look upon the blemishes, we may become disheartened and justify our own wayward behavior, even thinking, perhaps, that we must have a certain kind of Christian home in order to be the sort of Christian we desire to be ~ when the exact opposite is true. Our power to live a Christian life is in Christ, and in him alone.  And only in discovering this can we do our part to make a Christian home.

  "A Christian home where others behave as they ought to will diminish our temptations, but it will not give the power to become the sons of God.  It will not give us the victory of faith.  Those things are available only in the Lord Jesus Christ, and they are available whatever our circumstances, and regardless of what sort of home we have."

   Today I add that Christianity, not dependent on a perfect family, is also not dependent on the perfect church. Each of us has the responsibility to fellowship with a church which is as much conformed to the Scriptures as possible, but even the best of those will have its blemishes. 

   All the things said about the Christian family also pertain to the family of Christ. We are each of us responsible for ourselves, for our own relationship with the Father, with the head of the church, and with each other. We can choose the best church possible, and we should, but when our brothers and sisters in Christ fail to be patient, calm, courageous, joyous, and servant-like, it is no excuse for us also to become so. 

   We have no business to become discouraged or to blame our church for our own failures. Our strength is still where it always was (or should be) ~ in the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.  No matter how weak and failing our church or our family may be, we have the power in Christ to be conformed to His image; to be one of those who hears what the Spirit says unto the churches and to overcome.


  1. This is excellent! Thank you!!