It helps to hear the truth.

People who think otherwise are crazy. Scripture says that “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” and that “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.”

How many times have each of us said to another, “Tell me to stop”?

Set scene: Grandma and I are sitting on the couch, just relaxing and watching TV. I have in my grasp a newly opened, huge, (like 3 lb) bag of animal crackers. I have not had animal crackers in years, literally.

Grandma: Mm. These are so good.
Me: Right? They have a nice crunch to them.
*attention returns to the program* *six or seven minutes pass*
Me: I can’t stop eating them. They are SO good.
*another minute or so*
Me: Tell me to stop eating.
Grandma: Put them DOWN, Lexi!
*throws last cracker in mouth* *folds bag closed*
Me: Whew. Thank you!

I knew I should have stopped. I knew that I was more focused on the awesome way those tasty morsels crunches against my teeth than whether I actually needed the energy or snack. But I just kept going. My stomach was full and I just kept eating. If we (or maybe it’s just me, I don’t know) reach out to hear the truth for instances so small as overeating (the occasional kind, here, the disorder is a bigger deal), WHY do we think we can do this whole ‘Christian walk’ thing alone? ‘Me and Jesus are all I need’ sounds so great, but even Jesus didn’t roll alone. Are you more secure in your ability to connect to the Father outside of community than Jesus was? Is there a model for faith that pleases God to exist in a vacuum? Or, could it be, that Jesus, being fully man and fully God, modeled not only for our benefit, but for his own? The human created by the Lord is not meant for solitude. God himself exists in a perfect triune community. He knows this model is best. So, why not follow it?

I am speaking to myself. I have had a really tough time sticking to attending church on Sundays. Partly, my current family situation often makes it very difficult, if not altogether impossible. But, really? EVERY Sunday? Could I not arrange things to cover that 2 hour gap once a week? Not only can I, I *need* to.

I was almost thinking that this ‘short’ 6 month period is just a blip, and if I’m not really under church covering for now, it will be fine. No, not really. There is protection, encouragement and sharpening that happens when I am placed under corporate spiritual leadership. There is, truly, strength in numbers. God does not give unnecessary guidelines. Each serves a practical and eternal purpose.

So, get it together, and get into community and get into a church building. I likely won’t have time to join a local body, since I will be moving very soon, but that doesn’t mean I can’t commune with one while I am here. Because, though my individual, daily walk with Jesus is good, I NEED to hear the Truth.