Why do we even go to church?
You go to school to get an education so you can make a living. You go to work to make money so you can pay the bills. You go to the gym for exercise and better health. You go to the mall to shop for clothes and the grocery store to buy food. You go to the lake to fish, the ball game to cheer, and golf course for fun.
But church? Why go to church? Why get up early on one of your few off-days? Why go through the hassle of dressing up and the getting the kids ready? Why go to the trouble of finding a parking space near the front and a seat near the back?
Why go to church?
If you've ever found yourself wondering about that little question, you're not alone. Surveys tell us that as many as 79% of Americans identify themselves as Christians, yet only 20% of Americans attend church regularly. I guess some people look at going to church as a bother—an unnecessary burden to be avoided whenever possible—a perfectly good hour wasted in order to keep a wife or a preacher or a parent off their backs. Others see it as sort of like punching a spiritual clock or earning brownie points with their Maker.
But to someone who understands church and what it's really all about, going to church can be the most spiritually fulfilling, inspiring thing you do all week.
The Book of Acts tells the story of how the church got started. Fifty days after Jesus rose from the dead, he sent the Holy Spirit to empower his disciples. They went out and began preaching about the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus—the Good News. Millions of people listened, thousands believed. Then at the end of Acts 2, we find this short snapshot of what life was like in the early church:
"Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church that day—about 3,000 in all. All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord's Supper), and to prayer. A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord's Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity—all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved." (Acts 2:41-47 NLT)
Fellowship, the belonging to the community of GOD - validation as a Child of GOD and relationship with the FAMILY of GOD. SO that is why we attend CHURCH!