Welcome back to 31 Days to Hallway Praise! Today is Day 7 of the challenge!
For some of us, it can be tempting to skip church when the going gets tough. Whether it's difficult to be open about our struggles or whether we're afraid of people asking questions we'd really not answer, my flesh understands and sympathizes with those who fall out of fellowship during a hallway.
However, staying away from church is one of the worst things we can do when we're hurting.
Fellowship with other believers is a necessary component to the Christian faith. And it becomes even more needed during times of struggle. Without regularly meeting with your brothers and sisters in Christ, it's easy to let the discouragement overwhelm you. Not only that, but if you're not meeting with your local Body, you may very well be missing the opportunity to encourage someone else, making lack of attendance a double tragedy.
Put bluntly, we need to stay in church!
There are definitely times to be alone; Christ often went away to solitary places to pray. But He also ministered in the synagogues, to His disciples, and to the crowds. The writer of Hebrews commands us not to forsake meeting together with the body of believers (Hebrews 10:24-25).
It's been said that human beings were created to need community. This is true no matter what your personality type. I'm a complete introvert. I have no out-going tendencies, and yet even I need the fellowship of other Christians. Talking with other believers, singing together in hymns and songs of worship, and hearing the Word preached are all vital to my spiritual growth.
And as I mentioned earlier, if I don't stay in church, I'm missing out on opportunities to minister to others. Maybe someone else is going through something similar to what I'm going through (or have gone through). Perhaps the Lord wants to use me to minister to that person. If I shy away from going to church, even if my reason seems valid in my own head, I'm missing out on a wonderful opportunity, and the person to whom I was supposed to minister misses out, too.
So, even if it's hard, even if you don't always feel like it, make sure you're staying in church. Make sure you're fellowshiping regularly with the body of Christ. We all need one another to grow in our faith and to get through our hallways.