So Much More Than Walls
“For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God…”-Ephesians 2:18-19
On a recent visit with dear family friends, my family experienced something that was truly disheartening. Our friends, who are all fellow followers of Christ, had gone through some difficulties in their church. You see, just like us, they attend church with fellow humans…fellow sinners saved by grace. What was so disheartening is that they weren’t communicating in a way that resembled grace, love, and loyalty, rather they communicated in such a way that it was evident that bitter roots had formed. As my wife and I were driving back home and our children were fast asleep in the back of our van, I simply asked her, “Did that feel right to you?” Her face revealed a genuine sadness and she expressed her concern for the situation and how she also felt surprised by our interactions. Simply put, people are messy, yet as followers of Christ we find ourselves inside the fold…we are no longer strangers and aliens, but we are saints in the household of God.
I once heard a pastor say during a teaching, “If you ever find a perfect church, you better leave because you are going to ruin it.” He wasn’t trying to be hurtful; rather he was trying to allude to the truth that churches are so much more than the walls, traditions, emotional experiences, and budgets. Brothers and sisters, we must follow Christ’s example and exist to love one another, to bear with one another, and to share and pursue Christ wholly. Consider the following verses…
“…built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.”-Ephesians 2:20-22
When we find ourselves challenged in our interpersonal relationships within the body, it is critical that we ask ourselves prior to any reaction, “Is my response going to bring glory to Christ and am I building my brother/sister up?” We are called to love one another differently than what we see occurring in the world. By putting Christ at the center of our relationships, we can find rest in the one and only truth.
May we be a body that is committed to being built together into a dwelling place for God…that does not happen with walls, lights, and comfortable seats, but rather with love, grace, and the pursuit of Christ. There is no greater place that we can find ourselves than at the feet of our loving Savior.
-Your Brother in Christ, Zack Fugate