Reverencing the house of God

1 Timothy 3:15 “But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.” God is telling Timothy how to run the Church in this chapter. The qualifications of a Bishop (or Pastor) and the qualifications of a Deacon (and their wives) are listed. I believe if the Pastor is a man of God and follows the qualifications, the church will straighten up. I know ours sure did! I’m not saying we walked into a heathen church, but there were a few things that needed tweaking.

Reverencing the house of God has become an issue in today’s churches. Why? Younger generations do not have the same level of respect for God that our Grandparents had. If you were to walk into a church 50 years ago (1960) you would notice several things.

1. All the ladies/girls were wearing dresses or skirts (that came at least to their knee) and the men/boys had on suits (with a tie). You didn’t see any low-cut tops. I heard a story of a preacher saying when he first began preaching he wouldn’t have given a nickel for a choir robe. Now he wishes he could buy cases of them and hand them out to the women of the congregation. Ladies, the pastor does not want to see your chest while he’s trying to preach God’s word. And I’ll tell ya now, his wife doesn’t want him seeing it either! (Or her 9-year-old son!)

2. There was NOBODY eating or drinking in the Sanctuary. What in the world is with the coffee shops? I understand the youth getting together around 8 or 9 and serving breakfast to try to earn money for their activities. But in the Sanctuary, I don’t think so! Keep it in the fellowship hall, before church. And for goodness sakes, don’t bring in your cappuccino to church, it’s not a Barnes & Noble!

3. If someone needed to use the restroom, they did it BEFORE church. I heard an old pastor say this “If the Spirit of the Lord is moving on someone, I don’t want little Johnny running down the aisle to the bathroom. It takes the attention off of God and puts it on Johnny.” Do you want YOUR child to be the reason someone is distracted and does not go to the altar? This goes for you adults too. YOU set the example! I know there are going to be emergencies, don’t go in the pew, but try to make it your goal to go before church. I’m sure your pastor will appreciate your attention through the whole service!

4. Children were not allowed to run through the church-anywhere, not even in the fellowship hall. I was not raised in church. I went a few times growing up, I lived in a small town of 1,300 with 16 churches. There was one a block east and a block west from my home. I went to both. I NEVER saw anyone running or playing anywhere in the church. We all went outside for that. During Sunday school, we’d either play a quiet game or go outside if it was going to be noisy.

5. People did not talk amongst themselves DURING church or the Bible studies. OK adults, this is for you. Unless you are talking about the study (which you could join the conversation going on) be quiet. We wonder why kids talk and move around during the service, us adults don’t set the example.

6. There were no clocks in the Sanctuary. God does not know time. WE know time and we think that it’s OURS. Let me tell ya something, Sunday is the Lords DAY, not couple hours, DAY! What happened to the good ol days when the congregation would bring a plate of fried chicken, crock-pot of stew and some ham sandwiches and fellowship with one another after church?

7. LEAVE YOUR PHONE IN THE CAR! When service is running a little late, and God is moving, people are being convicted and, RING RING RING, nothing quenches the spirit like a phone call during the altar service.

8. Since I’m on the subject of alters, WHERE ARE THEY? WHAT ARE THEY FOR? I’ve noticed in a few churches we’ve went to for revivals, meetings or just visiting while out-of-state that the alters are getting smaller or completely vanishing from the church. I’m glad to say that we have one of the biggest alters I’ve ever seen. When DH started pastoring at this church, he wacked his knees on it it was so long! It’s probably 10′ long! Here’s the problem, no one used it, EVER! When we showed up for the first few services and the altar call was given-nothing-not one person went to it to pray-nobody. DH asked them where they were praying for a pastor at, cause it certainly wasn’t there. By setting the example, they use it now. The altar is a place where the lost get found, the hurting get healed and the humble give thanks. Let’s get them back into the church (and homes-but that’s a blog for another day!) and USE them!

My rant is over! God’s house is not to be used for play time, it’s a house of worship and of prayer. Let’s give God the respect He deserves and honour His house accordingly.

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