Sunday, September 17, 2017

It’s Time to Get Back to Church

“Let us not give up meeting together as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
– Hebrews 10:25

It makes me laugh. A quick five minute search on the internet reveals that every day in September is a holiday of some sort. And I’ll bet you’ve never heard of most of them. Sure, you’ve heard of Labor Day and National Grandparents Day, but did you know that September 2nd was International Bacon Day? (Now, that’s a holiday that I could really sink my teeth into!) Or did you know that September 4th was Eat an Extra Dessert Day, and September 6th was National Fight Procrastination Day?

This weekend is chock-full of interesting holidays. Friday is National Felt Hat Day. Across our great nation all ten people who know this holiday exists are sporting their favorite felt hats. And my heartfelt “congratulations” to all of you reading this article. Without even knowing it, you're likely to be successfully celebrating Saturday’s little-known holiday: National Stay Away from Seattle Day. Evidently, Seattle residents like the idea of taking a one-day breather from the rampant tourism that they believe overcrowds their city.

Some of these little-known holidays are quirky and laughable. But this Sunday’s little-known holiday is no laughing matter. You see, September 17th is National Back to Church Sunday. As families across America have entered back to school season, Christian churches are spreading this very important message: “No matter how long it’s been since you’ve attended, it’s time to get back to church.” No guilt trips. No finger pointing. No rude comments like, “Boy, are you a flake or what?” Just a friendly, biblically-grounded reminder: “It’s time to stop putting church on the back burner. It’s time to get back to church.”

Let’s face it. We all have a laundry list of excuses for why we don’t attend church each week. New parents are exhausted by daily 2 a.m. feedings. Parents of school aged children and teens are pulled every which way by the demands of coaches, teachers, bosses and in-laws. And many empty nesters in the midst of the so-called “golden years” find themselves busier than ever. There’s no doubt about it: There are many competing priorities jockeying for our attention on a Sunday morning, and church…well, sometimes it just gets lost in the shuffle.

But it shouldn’t. If God is our #1 priority, how can we allow worshiping Him alongside other Christians to be such a low priority? That doesn’t make sense. However, on any given Sunday, there are millions of Christians across our nation who choose not to attend a worship service. Many will catch Joel Osteen, Charles Stanley or Tony Evans on the tube and say, “I did church at home today.” But don’t forget: You can’t fellowship with a TV or radio broadcast. And you can’t take communion with, pray with or encourage your 50” High Def screen. Bottom line: Although TV broadcasts can, at times, deliver biblical teaching into our homes, they are a very poor replacement for the bride of Christ—the local church.

So, if it’s been a few weeks, a few months or even a few years since you’ve attended a worship service at your home church, this weekend offers the perfect Sunday to get back in the pew (or chair). The door will be open wide. You will be warmly received. You will be blessed. And perhaps what might surprise you most of all is that you will be a blessing. You may be a blessing to a discouraged Christian sitting in front of you. You may be a blessing to the pastor who sees you with your Bible in hand, sitting in a chair that would have otherwise remained empty. You may be a blessing to the worship leader as you express your sincere love for Christ by joining in a song of praise. And the little bit you place in the offering plate may be the exact amount a church-supported missionary needs to take the Gospel to a city that desperately needs to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Yes, making church a weekly priority for you and your family is very important. Your presence can make a church stronger, more energetic, more impactful, and more adequately covered in prayer. And the benefits and blessings it affords to you and your family are too numerous to count. Oh, there will always be plenty of other things to do on a Sunday morning, but for Christians there will never be a weekly Sunday morning priority that is more important than worship. Deep down, I think you know this. So, push the excuses aside. Get back to church this Sunday. And if you don’t have a church home, I’d like to invite you to join us at First Christian Church.

Dane Davis is the Lead Pastor of First Christian Church in Victorville. For more information, visit  and join us for worship tomorrow at 10 a.m.

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