With our culture slowly and steadily shying away from attending local churches, I thought I’d offer my reasons for attending a local congregation. I’ve always attended churches, and yet I understand the frustration many have with the modern church establishment. I understand that the body of Christ seems to have sold out to politics (on both sides of the fence), I get that local congregations are often not the greatest sources of God’s grace, I have attended churches that served more as a bunker than a hospital. I get those things.
But there’s something about coming together as a local expression of the body of Christ that’s powerful. There’s something about a group being able to gather together as broken messed up people, seeking grace, seeking God. The early church had no problem attending a local meeting, none of them considered Christianity something that was individualized. Rather in was a communal practice.
Following Jesus was never about the individual, but rather about the community that makes up the Bride of Christ.
No one in the early church is noted to having attended a specific congregation because that one had the best music, or a great children’s program, or even because of their pastor/preacher/elder. Rather they gathered together to encourage one another, to take the Lord’s Supper together.
It’s hard to love one another when you’re by yourself. It’s hard to encourage one another when you don’t have a local body you belong to.