I'm just coming to the end of reading Joshua Harris' book, Stop Dating the Church: Fall in Love with the Family of God and it has to be the most clear, easy and succinct book I have read on: what the church is; being a part of the church; the importance of joining a church; and, what things to look for in a church. But the most helpful chapter in the book was by far: Rescuing Sunday, How to Get More from the Best Day of the Week.
If you are anything like me, or your house is anything like ours on a Sunday morning, I don't always feel like it's the best day of the week for me! Sunday mornings are the one day when you ALL have to be up and dressed, fed and ready to leave by 10am and things can get pretty strained when your hubby is either preaching, leading student bible studies or even preparing to lead the service. You find yourself running around trying to feed and dress all three members of the family before finally realising that you can't go to church in your dressing gown and that you must get dressed also! Anyways, perhaps you are in a similar situation to me, you have kids, maybe 3, maybe 4 and the getting to church experience parallels that of being thrown into a whirlwind, tossed around and spat out just in time to get into the car to go to church. Maybe you don't have kids, but the late night out with friends or watching a movie leaves you feeling tired and groggy and the thought of a nice lie in seems far better than getting up to meet with God's people and listening to his Word preached.
Well, if that describes any of you then I have 3 helpful hints courtesy of Joshua Harris. If you want more then you need to read the book! They have been particularly challenging to me as I seek to rescue what I can from my Sundays.
1. We need to see Sunday as God's day. Harris writes: "when your heart begins to beat for God's glory and God's people and you begin to glimpse his longing for you, Sunday changes...it becomes something extraordinary. Something sacred. Something essential."
2. We need to prepare for God's day. Not only do we need to make practical preparations, we need to get our hearts ready. Harris writes: "A great Sunday starts Saturday night. It begins with carefully deciding what you do and don't do the night before." Does that mean you need to get to bed earlier so that you have enough rest? Does it mean that rather than watching mind numbing TV you might be better prepared by reading or listening to something more wholesome and focussed on the Lord?
3. During the meeting, Harris comments, "remember the eternal significance of what you're joining. You are gathering with the people of God. You've come to worship God, and He will be present by His Spirit...you are not here to be entertained... you stand before the Audience of One."
If you have any more helpful hints, things you do to prepare for your Sunday why not drop us a comment, we'd be glad to hear from you.