I frequently meet people who have convinced themselves that they do not need church, that their faith is strong enough, that they can and will regularly pray, study the Bible, and act righteously without the need for a fellowship of like minded believers. For new believers, this seems reasonable as they often exude a passion that not only drives their spiritual growth but also the faith of those around them.
But who will help fan the flames of faith when they cool?
A camp fire can burn for days only when someone regularly adds fuel and occasionally stirs the embers to encourage a path for air to circulate through.
While few North American Christians are likely to physically suffer for their faith as did early disciples, our culture subtlety starves faith of fuel by encouraging us to spend our time elsewhere; sporting events, unscheduled time at home, television, rest … Our over-scheduled youth are a primary indicator of how culture siphons energy away from faith restoring activities.
I will have more to say about the apostle Paul’s letter to his young student Timothy (2 Timothy 1:1-14) on Sunday, October 2nd, 2016 at Temple Terrace Presbyterian Church.
Robert Shaw, Pastor