Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A Book for Every Christian

I have been reading, and talking with others lately, about church membership. I suppose this line of thinking comes partly from my experience with some church "members." My setting is no different than yours. Our congregation has a core group of believers who love the Lord and are unwavering in their commitment to the ministry of the Body of Christ. In addition, there is a small number who are technically "members" but their participation and actions do not reflect that title. My heart hurts for them and my frustration grows with each passing absence from the life of the Body. While we are pursing a path of recovering those who have drifted from the church, I am also interested in strengthening those who remain firmly within our ranks.

During the SBC I was given a copy of Thabiti Anyabwile's book What is a Healthy Church Member? It is an excellent work that strikes at the heart of genuine church membership. I encourage every Christian to get this book and read it. Because, of course, every Christian should be a healthy church member. The Bible is quite unfamiliar with the idea that one can be a Christian and not deeply committed to a local congregation. Furthermore, healthy members contribute to a healthy church.

Each of us who profess an allegiance to the Lord Jesus Christ are called to be His disciples. The making of disciples takes place within the context of the local church. This is a huge task that has been woefully ignored in many congregations and yet it is one of our primary responsibilities. It is my desire to be part of a church that develops not only a love for the lost, but a sense of urgency to disciple and equip the saved. So that every individual part of the Body becomes a vibrant and healthy member.

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