Dump Closed. Go to Church.

That is exactly what the sign reads at one of our local dumps.  When I took a load of trash to the dump on Friday afternoon, I noticed the sign as I drove in.  The place is open on Sundays from 1:00-5:30PM.  Under that information appeared a less-than-subtle encouragement from the manager:  “Go to Church.”

“Well, fine, I’ll go to church” (Cascade aka Miss Sassy now talks like that).

Twenty-five years into my Christian walk, I still actively attend church.  Like most of you, I’ve been bored.  I’ve been burned.  I’ve been disappointed.  However, that does not give me the right to abandon God’s plan for my growth or the growth of others.

I need the church.  The church needs me.

I also need to pray.  This morning I was challenged by another makeshift sign.  As I drove south on HWY 153 through Hixson (a northern section of Chattanooga), I easily noticed the very large word PRAY on the side of a sheet metal building.  Whoever painted those words wants me to pray.  I don’t know what exactly was on his/her mind (or whether or not it might be described as “religious vandalism”), but every time I read the words I consider it an admonition to remain in fellowship with God.

If I am to be the man the Lord wants me to be, if I am to make a difference in the lives of those around me, if I am going to accomplish anything of lasting value, I need to stay in fellowship with God’s people and–more importantly–with God Himself.

Today found me praying and working.  Sunday will find me praying and serving at church.

Are you taking advantage of the means of grace at your disposal (Bible reading, church attendance, fellowship, prayer, etc.)?  I simply do not understand how professing Christians think that they are fine while not proactively seeking Christ.  I am thankful that I have the desire to do so.  I am also fearful of what I would become, what I would do, if I strayed!  May God keep us all from straying!

Remember–the dump is closed on Sunday morning.

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