The meeting place
For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them
Everybody has a different view of where the church should meet. It is a matter of personal preference. There are benefits and drawbacks to each.
Meeting in public place is the most basic means of church. It requires church to go out into the world to speak to others about God. This can be a struggle at times due to government regulations on public meetings. Depending on where you are located, weather can be an issue. It requires no financial means and you go to those that are in need.
The home church is a grass roots means of meeting which provides shelter from the elements and the financial obligations are minimal leaving them with worshiping, teaching, praying, discipling and community. Often the pastors are grown from within the home church and new leaders go out and start new home churches. There are restrictions as it does require people to open up their homes to meet.
The church building has become something that signifies the church. You often hear the phrase “I am going to church”. The building has become something held in great reverence which becomes the focus. It does allow for more opportunities to meet as it does not require the availability of a home owner to open there house to meet.
At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom.
Where we meet is insignificant in comparison to what we do when we meet. The meeting place can be an obstacle to worship and community. The idea of going into public places, a home church and meeting in a building can bring up stigmas surrounding the idea of church. If you choose to meet in public places or in a home church, this must be something you feel is conducive to how you want to worship and build community.
Another phrase you often hear is “I am looking for a church home”. When you walk into a church building, do you think “this is just like my home”. Not likely. Most churches have the appearance of a center for the performing arts or an institution. What is the first thing you do when you walk into an unfamiliar church building? You take a 360 degree look at the inside and assess whether you feel comfortable or not. We must not lose sight of what is important. Does this please God? Rethink church.
Something to think about:
- Is it possible to make a church meeting place (building) feel like home?
- Has the church institution lost sight of what is important because of reverence for the building and traditions?
- Can the church building be used in a different manner to enhance, worship, teaching, prayer, discipling and community?