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  • Writer's picturePastor Tim Chinn

Who Needs The Church? #6

Updated: Aug 24, 2020

Thank you for joining me for installment number six of our “Who Needs the Church”1 devotional.  Over the next several days, I want us to continue to think about and pray for the kinds of people who need a local church like Grace Evangelical Church. As I shared earlier, a study of the New Testament reveals that there are at least seven different kinds of people who need the church. It is my prayer that we all would see ourselves in each of these or begin praying for someone we think might identify themselves as a member of a particular group.  Previous, I discussed the first two kinds of people who need the church: Broken People and Dependent People. Today, I want us to consider the third kind of people, Imperfect People People who live with or around perfectionists say that the challenge can be about as enjoyable as trying to hug a cactus! For the perfectionist, nothing you do is ever quite good enough. Words of appreciation and encouragement are rarely given. Often one criticism is followed by another. You can never relax because the job is never finished. None of that sounds very appealing. What is missing in this equation is grace. Some of us who would never think of ourselves as perfectionists are miserably compulsive when it comes to our church. We are far too critical and far too demanding of others within our church who are, in reality, no worse than ourselves. Frequently, we tend to have a poor memory when it comes to our own faults and shortcomings. It might do us all good to spend some thoughtful time reading Matthew 18:21-35.  All churches, at their best, are made up entirely of imperfect people. No church is, or ever will be, perfect because no one in the church is perfect. Every church member is like the recovering alcoholic who knows he or she will always be tempted to fall back into old habits. Every follower of Jesus, when honest with themselves, struggles daily with our sinful nature of self-centeredness, self-sufficiency, pride, and the inclination to return insult for insult (but that is our ‘flesh’ Eph 2:3). The apostle John gave us a realistic picture of ourselves in his first epistle. From what he wrote, we can conclude that we are an imperfect people who must deal honestly with our imperfections before one another and before our perfect Lord. Scripture for today             “If we say we have fellowship with Him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us. My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.” 1 John 1:6-2:1 When we see the extent of our own imperfections, we have a good foundation for healthy church relationships. (1) This keeps us honest with ourselves and others. (2) This encourages personal humility and respect for others (Titus 3:1-3). (3) This gives us a reason to be merciful toward the wrongs of others as we strive to be right with the Lord (Matt. 5:6,7). As Imperfect as we all are, we have no basis for pride or self-righteousness within the church. We must strive to become better by becoming more merciful, loving, and more like our Savior.   Prayer for today Thank you, Lord, for giving us the Church and our church. Thank You for being the Perfect Savior to imperfect people like me. Help me to surrender my own perfectionistic expectations of myself and others to You.  Help me to be honest with others about my own imperfections. Help me to model humility and respect for others. Help me to offer grace, mercy, and forgiveness when others display their imperfections. Help me begin by reaching out to others who are feeling isolated and alone, and be an encouragement to them. In Jesus’ name, amen I look forward to sharing more devotional thoughts about “Who Needs the Church”. Blessings, Pastor Tim

  1. Who Needs the Church?  Radio Bible Class, 1990

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