In today’s society, people far too often get caught up in material goods when spiritual knowledge is far more valuable. Case in point is the building which hosts a church.
Of course, it’s preferable to meet close friends and worship in a nice building with modern amenities, but only when it isn’t forgotten that the building isn’t the church. The church is the people who come together for prayer and an expression of their beliefs as a reminder of the sacrifice Jesus made and the love God provides.
The church worships together on Sunday morning, and according to the schedules of the people who are the church, throughout the week. A building which the people who are the church puts together hosts such events, but there is much more to worship than meeting on Sunday. For example, Christian friends and often have dinner together and pray before they eat, and that is a form of worship.
Regardless of whether it is formally allowed, high school and college students who are Christian may say a prayer together with daily sports practice and before a game. Young children are taught to pray at bedtime and adults often continue the tradition.
Worship is not limited to a building, rather, it is the people who worship that provide the Word of God on a regular daily basis in order to build a lifestyle which is rich in faith and becoming of one who practices Christian morals.
Routine Services: Weddings, Funerals, and Counseling
Although the church doesn’t rely on a building in order to express the faith people believe, a building can be a useful tool toward some of the functions a church serves.
Young couples usually prefer a nice atmosphere to express their love for each other through God’s grace when they wed. During the unfortunate time of someone’s passing, there is a need for adequate space in which people can mourn.
In each situation, people may need counseling, and others may need it regularly for issues they are unable to discuss with friends or family. In these situations, the building provides a place to conduct the activity. The substance of prayer and spreading God’s word is a matter of the congregation helping each other rather than a function of the physical building.
Local and Community Resources
A church building provides secular resources to the local community outside of the spiritual aspects of church service.
Something as simple as a basketball goal in the parking lot can change the outcome of a child’s life. The chance to play a piano can likewise determine how another child determines values in later life. When the basketball player and pianist interact with each other within the overall positive message sent by the people who provided for the designated space to happen, the true miracle of God’s creation becomes apparent.
Other resources a church provides because their members utilize the building can also benefit the local community. Providing food for the hungry is a basic obligation of Christians as taught by Jesus. A deeper lesson is to help others regardless of what their need may be. A church building facilitates such things, but ultimately it is the people who conduct such activities.
As seen during 2017’s hurricane season, churches also serve as ideal shelters for those who can’t find it anywhere else.
Missionary work is a different aspect of church service which by definition doesn’t rely on a specific building but the people who provide the service. The church building may be useful as office space and a meeting area while planning a missionary trip, but again, the building just sits there while the people do the work.
It’s important to remember how missionary work doesn’t always involve an elaborate trip to a 3rd world country, sometimes it can be as simple as dropping off supplies to a nearby farm which had a bad harvest. New missionaries may mistakenly think they must preach; experienced missionaries understand the word of God spreads itself and are thus prepared to spread the Word as needed or simply provide the service “for now” until the recipient realizes the grace they have been granted.
The true purpose of a church is to maintain a moral compass in the community. A building provides a place for people to meet, or potentially maintain offices and logistics concerning services provided, but it is in fact the people rather than the building who make great things happen.
~ 1776 Christian