Monday, September 23, 2013

Re-Member Devotions: Week 1, Day 1

Re-Member: “Transformed” (September 23 – September 29)

Day One:

“Membership has its privileges!” So the old commercial goes which tries to convince us to join an “exclusive” club of credit card holders. The air of superiority and respect abounds with such membership. It is not only with certain association with particular financial institutions, but also with clubs, organizations, cars we drive, neighborhoods we live in, and stores where we shop. 

All of this changes when we consider what it means to be a member of the body of Christ. When we “join” this group / movement / organization, it is not about the privileges, but about the leader. Everywhere else it seems to focus on the privileges I enjoy as a member. In the church, it is not about the followers, but about the Leader, Jesus Christ.

Interestingly enough, being a follower of Christ is the privilege. Furthermore, being a follower of Christ makes you an automatic member of the body. This is known as the “invisible church”. The Church is made up of every Jesus follower throughout the world and throughout time. Orange Friends Church is a local expression of the “visible church”. 

Although those of us who follow Christ are members of the body of Christ, not everyone is a member of the local church at Orange Friends. Does formal membership in the local “visible” church have privileges? Well, yes, in the sense that being an active follower of Jesus through an engaged community is a privilege (and a responsibility). There are no Lone Rangers in Christianity. We are called to be part of a local community of believers. This belonging is not for the privileges it carries, but for the responsibilities that it calls us into. 

This week, meditate on and memorize I Corinthians 12:27 “Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.” Allow the Holy Spirit to speak to your spirit about the meaning of being in community through membership in His universal invisible Church and His local visible expression through Orange Friends Church.

My prayer is that, at the end of this sermon series, you will be compelled to re-commit to membership in the body of Christ. This is a call to a renewal of the covenant with God and with your local church, Orange Friends. If you are not yet a formalized member of Orange Friends Church, I ask that you will consider making a covenant with us as we make a covenant with you towards the glory of God and the building up of His Church. 
- Pastor David

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