Psalm 122:1 1 I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD.”
A few months have passed since many of us assembled at the LOVE2020 gathering in Colorado Springs and a few weeks since the Table Coalition gathering in L.A. There is a strength and sweetness that comes with gathering together with co-laborers in Christ as we seek to serve and share Jesus’ love and message with every person in America and beyond. We share stories and strategies to make us stronger, to help us collaborate and make sure we are covering as many areas, cities, and people as possible. There is a special, tender spirit as we gather as the family of God, having walked and worked in relationship for years and for some of us decades.
In Scripture there are many reasons why God’s people were called to assemble. They assembled in prayer, to hear God’s Word read and taught, to see His miracles, to anoint new leaders such as priests and kings. God’s people assembled for worship, to celebrate the feasts and to remember all God had done and make sure the next generation heard of God’s miracles and goodness as well as His commands.
People assembled as prophets spoke, councils made decisions, and to go to war. Jesus’ disciples were gathered together in prayer when the Holy Spirit was sent, and the gospel was preached with power and boldness that drew 3000 to believe and be baptized in one day. From that moment on there has been a mission placed on every believer’s life to “go and make disciples.”
Disciples need a place to be discipled; a place to study God’s Word, learn about Jesus and how to yield to the Spirit for a holy and fruitful life. We call this gathering “church”, but it is not just a holy hang out but a place where we gather to work out our salvation. The word “disciple” means pupil or student. We gather just as the early disciples did to learn and live the lessons of Jesus and the God who created all that exists and rules over us in power and love beyond anything we can think or imagine.
Wonderfully, it is not up to us to imagine God or make life up as we go, we have been given an instruction book, a history lesson, a love letter; clear instructions on how and why we are to trust and obey God Almighty. Our gatherings, including Sunday services, Bible studies, prayer gatherings, conferences on college campuses, or Christ celebrations and events held in sports arenas are meant to teach us as students and followers of the God who gave us life and desires to guide and guard us through it for His glory and our good.
Appreciating Our Pastors
Though we’ve just finished last month’s Pastor Appreciation Month, we pray that you will continue to surprise your pastors in wonderful heart-felt ways and show them appreciation and love throughout the year.
Hebrews 10:24-25 says, Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful; and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.
Joining Hands: GO2020 & LOVE2020
By God’s ongoing, empowering grace, the LOVE2020 initiative presses on towards its original goal in partnership with hundreds of ministries, churches and Christ-followers in cities and communities across America. One focus in particular is GO2020; the “Every believer a witness” movement that calls for believers around the world to live a Prayer-Care-Share lifestyle throughout the month of May2020 to reach a billion people with the love and gospel message of Jesus.
We rejoice as the Table Coalition (formerly Mission America) and LOVE2020 has prompted this lifestyle for decades and now God has brought people together from all over the world to be the voice, hands and feet to spread the gospel in this simple yet strategic way. Ministries, denominations, cities, and believers in America and all over the world are gathering together in obedience to Christ’s commission to us to “Go and make disciples.”
Finally, there is the gathering we all eagerly await. Mark 13:27 “And then He will send forth the angels and will gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest end of the earth to the farthest end of heaven. Amen, Come Lord Jesus.”
But, let us “gather” in prayer now: Lord Jesus we thank You that You never called us to go it alone. You always sent Your disciples out in two or more. You created us for relationship; in a personal relationship with You and with the people You put in our lives, in our path, wherever we live, work, worship, learn and play. We continue to commit to live a Prayer-Care-Share lifestyle. Thank you for calling us to assemble not to isolation, but to edification and preparation for our daily work in the harvest. Thank you for all the opportunities to gather together to know You and make You known. Please bless our churches, fill Your people with Your Word and Your presence.
Photo by Shelagh Murphy from Pexels