Much of what we see today in our churches is not what God had planned when the church was called into existence. Jesus said “I will build My church” and we have gone and done exactly what Paul said in Galatians 3:3 “Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” We have left God’s plan for the church and built our own empires instead.
The church was meant to first be in God’s presence, and then to go into all the world. And we have gotten this all backwards. We have gone and done all kinds of things and forgotten to first be with God. Our churches are known by many things, including community service and many others, and this is not what God intended. Jesus said to the church at Ephesus “I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance. I know that you cannot tolerate evildoers; you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them to be false. I also know that you are enduring patiently and bearing up for the sake of my name, and that you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.”
God intended us to be with Him first before we ever ran out into the world. And He is again calling us to that role. God want’s us to be known for and marked by His presence. To be like Peter and John, when they were before the Sanhedrin “Now as they observed the confidence of Peter and John and understood that they were uneducated and untrained men, they were amazed, and began to recognize them as having been with Jesus.” The question before us is will we respond?
Sam Nunn, a former US senator, said “You have to pay the price. You will find that everything in life extracts a price, and you will have to decide whether the price is worth the prize.” And that is the choice before the church. God is calling us to prepare the way for Him to restore the church to its proper place. Our choice is whether we will make straight the path and follow Him or will we continue on our current course. Every decision has a cost. Will we pay now and play later, or play now and pay later. Now is the time to prepare for God’s release. If we don’t we will miss out on what God is doing now. God will not force Himself on us. Will we respond and open the door to Him and become the church He planned or continue to build according to our plans and purposes. We cannot have both. The Spirit of God is moving seeking those who will respond to His call. The decision is now ours to make.