As I said in my last post it's been very easy lately to come up with excuses in my mind not to go to church, so these next few posts are certainly as much for me as anyone else. It's so easy to get consumed in ministry that you forget why exactly you're coming to church in the first place.
We should go to church to love, encourage, and teach our fellow Christians and to be loved encouraged and taught by fellow Christians.
Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ
As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.
Our relationship with Christ is certainly the most important aspect of our faith, but our relationships with other Christians are also of great importance. I cannot bear the burden of another if I don't know what that burden is. To loose touch with fellow Christians is to loose touch with the Body of Christ. Not only is it detrimental to the one not attending church it's detrimental to the body as a whole. We cannot be encouraged and we cannot encourage if we are not worshiping together.
God designed us to be relational, and there is certainly no shame in desiring to see friends or love them. It lifts our spirits when we can fellowship with other Christians. Christ said the second greatest commandment is to love one another, we are certainly not showing love to our fellow Christians if we neglect seeing them on a regular basis.
Not only does going to church encourage fellow Christians but it can teach them as well, particularly the younger generation. My Children come to church with me every Sunday and Wednesday not because they are going to be learning some spiritual truth they couldn't learn at home, but because we're forming a habit. They need to know every Sunday morning, and Sunday and Wednesday night we go to church. Not only am I setting an example for my children I'm setting an example for the children and teenagers my husband and I teach. If we don't come to church every Sunday why should they?
Going to church also encourages the Pastor and other church workers. Pouring yourself into ministry and then having no one to share it with can be a very discouraging thing indeed, but one new person in church or someone who hasn't been seen in awhile can change a discouraged spirit into an encouraged one quicker than anything.