How would it change the way you view LifePoint’s new building if you treated it like a home? Would it shape the way you treated the space?
Would it change the way you greeted and welcomed people?
Would it affect your intentionality and purpose?
It’s true that what happens at home is reflected in life outside of the home.
The home is a normal but sacred, beautiful but messy, strategic but chaotic, loving but disciplined place. What happens inside the home should shape what happens outside the home…
As followers of Christ, we belong to the family of God. We are no longer enemies, strangers, or sojourners. We have a home in God’s family because of Jesus! 1 John 3:1 says, “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.” Because of God’s outpouring of love to us in Christ, we are now his children. We have a permanent home in Him! Similarly, Paul reminds us, you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God” (Ephesians 2:19).
If it’s true we are all family in Christ, then it must be true that the gathering place of worship for believers (aka church building) must be kind of like a home.
So how does seeing LifePoint’s new building like a home change the way we experience it?
Here are three ways:
- How we welcome people
- How we train people
- How we send people
First, when someone new comes to your home, how do you prepare? If you’re cooking dinner you might find out what they like, or if they have any allergies. If they have kids you might “baby proof” the house and get toys out for them. You will welcome them at the door, tell them how glad you are to see them, take their coats, and direct them on where to go.
Likewise, when guests come to our home at LifePoint, we have the great privilege of loving and welcoming them in. Why do we do this? Well, “while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8), and therefore we love and welcome others out of the overflow of love we’ve been shown in Christ.
Secondly, think about the children in your home, or even the home you were raised in. What you learned to be “right or wrong” influenced what you thought to be “right or wrong” at school, with friends or at work. And, if you grew up with siblings, then you know that not only did they speak truth and love into your life, but you also were forced to seek reconciliation and forgiveness with each other.
Likewise, the church is the place where we learn from Scripture and from one another, speak life and love into each other, as well as practice repentance and forgiveness!
Thirdly, it is a good, normal, and healthy thing when a child leaves the home. One of the many roles of the parent is to raise up their children into adults who are prepared and ready to take on the world. Of course our maturing into adulthood is not without lots of bumps and bruises, but it’s for our good. We go out into the world, loving as we’ve been loved, teaching what we’ve been taught, and continuing this life cycle by starting our own lives, homes, and families.
Likewise, the church exists as a place to send out followers of Christ into the world, to share the love and knowledge of Christ, to raise up disciples, and to plant new churches, and so the pattern continues.
So as you reflect personally, how does viewing the church as a home change the way you view the church? I think it has the opportunity to radically change the way we see LifePoint’s new church building for the better!