Why are so many churches of every denomination turning out the lights and permanently closing their doors? Why are congregations continually struggling with ever decreasing numbers of parishioners regularly worshipping and gratefully placing their offerings of praise and thanksgiving on the collection plate at each service? Why are congregations struggling to pay the stipends of their Pastors, Ministers and Priests who are the individuals that give freely of their time and talents as spiritual and caring leaders within the church and community?
The answer is simply the population of today, unlike those of our forefathers, do not feel the impelling need to attend church, to worship, to pray, to give thanks to their God. We live in a time of constant activity and entertainment, which calls loudly for our attention and attendance, while our churches quietly disappear. There isn’t time for Church worship, which is now considered irrelevant. For centuries, humble men and women worked in their fields, shops and factories, always able to see their church’s steeple in the valley, or amid the downtown shops or in their neighborhoods. This beacon of God they trusted and worshipped was a hallowed place, a spot to renew strength, to worship God who upheld, sustained and protected them. The Sunday morning worship time was at the heart of their lives. They had little wealth, but they had a caring God who watched over them unceasingly. They felt very secure in that knowledge. They gave thanks.
In our country we live in a time of affluence. We lack nothing in food, clothing, toys and entertainment for all ages; what we need, we purchase, we have it all! We survey our own lives and resources, pat ourselves continually on the back, and smugly remind ourselves, we are successes, we are self-made men or women. In our own eyes we have done it all! But really have we? Do we realize our very life is a miracle, a gift of God, as well as our wonderful sons and daughters and families? Do we realize that every talent, ability, and thought we possess comes from our Heavenly Father? Do we realize that totally everything we buy, everything we own, including our health, is a gift from Almighty God? Without Almighty God, we are really nothing. Think about it!
The COVID-19 pandemic has struck the world and this unseen killer has turned our world upside down. Our health care systems, transportation, governments, business world, sports, and our day-to-day lives are under stress from this mysterious virus. At this point in time, there is no treatment in sight. Reality is you and I are not in control! It is time to return to the basics that sustained our forefathers; prayer, honesty, hard work, caring for our fellowman, and most importantly, returning to Almighty God, who created us, who knows all, sees all and accomplishes all things. Return to the churches wherein the Holy Spirit of God dwells. Life with God is life with peace, satisfaction, love for fellow man, and the sure hope of Eternal life beyond our death. Remember, our earthly possessions are worthless to us at death. Be renewed, live abundant life again, come to church, come and worship.