A family like no other
His father passed away early in his life. He lived with his mother until she passed away several years back. The young man came to our church just a couple of years before his mother passed away.
After she died, I was pleased to see the church take him under their wings. I myself had the privilege of teaching him to drive. Through the years different families would have him over for Thanksgiving and other holidays. He went on trips with us, he was faithful to church, he was and is a genuinely good guy.
Recently, still a man in his early thirties, he had a massive stroke. He is recovering, but has months and months ahead of him. And so, while he is recovering, men from our church have been going to his house, making some needed repairs and renovations, getting the yard looking nice, and getting everything ready for his hopefully soon return. Scores of our folks have traveled for hours on multiple occasions to visit with him.
The young man does not have money. He is not famous or powerful. But from the young to the old, members of the church have been treating him as if he is the most important person in the world! Why? Simple: he is related. To all of us...
In Galatians 6:10 Paul said “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.” Paul desired for us to reach out and help and serve and love everyone, but he also expected that we place an especial emphasis on doing so for those who are “of the household of faith!”
Throughout history it has been understood that Christians and the church are to be a family, a “household.” Becoming a part of a local body of believers is a special thing! A church is to treat one another as family regardless of whether there is any blood relationship or not, because we are in fact related by the blood of Christ!
When I was just a little boy in an angry and violent home situation, my mother started taking me to a church in Shelby. The men of that church became surrogate fathers to me. They taught me how men are supposed to act and think and behave. The ladies in the church cooed and clucked over me, and became a bunch of extra grandmothers.
The pastor made he “his protégé,” and poured thousands of hours of effort into me. Without that family, there is no telling how differently my story would have turned out!
This area is home to a great man fine churches. But everyone in those churches has a responsibility to be much more than acquaintances: we have a responsibility to be family!
We also have one more responsibility, and that is to fulfill the Great Commission so that we can make the family bigger. Jesus said in Matthew 28:19-20 “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” A church that does not evangelize does not obey!
Pray for Brian when you think of him. He is very special to me. He and I are not related, but he is one of my favorite brothers.
Dr. Bo Wagner is pastor of the Cornerstone Baptist Church of Mooresboro, a widely traveled evangelist, and the author of several books. His books are available at www.wordofhismouth.com