Any congregation, any church, that tries to function apart from the Spirit is powerless, a Zombie-a dead body-that looks alive but is dead on the inside. All it cares about is itself and all of its efforts are for itself. It does not produce at all but only takes. Every fundraiser is for themselves: a new roof, refrigerator, or just to keep the lights on. If all it is concerned with is within, then how is it fulfilling its purpose to be salt and light to those around it? It isn’t! It is dead, a drag on the community and on God’s true church.
The Church is to be equipping one another for works of service both in and out of the church building. That first church in Acts was learning together as the Church, they were devoted to each other, had meals together in one another’s homes, as Acts 2:46 tells us, and they prayed together… (they were equipped). God did not design His church to be a country club, or some kind of charitable organization that meets weekly, He put us together to learn and grow and teach and pray together so that we would be equipped to spread the Gospel!
Fellowship, worship, and ministry are all conducted by people, not buildings. Church buildings give us a place to have fellowship, a place to worship, and were intended to be a place to help us with, and in, the ministries we are called to do as the church. But buildings alone cannot meet every ministry need nor are they essential for a congregation to be the Church where they are placed.
Peter began his following when he and his brother Andrew heard Jesus’s call “Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men.” So Jesus’ first and – as we will soon discover – last commands to Peter are “Follow Me.”
Not only was his name changed… but his whole life as he journeyed with his Lord, he was still the same man but things within were changing. He was changing because he followed Christ, he was becoming more while on his journey with Jesus because of his love for Him.
Prayer, giving, discipleship, coming together keeps everybody informed, of one mind, and focused on the purpose God has given us together as a congregation of His Church. If you are not connected or plugged in, how are you actively a part of what God is seeking to accomplish?