Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Attending the Bride

In Jewish tradition the betrothal or time of was a very busy time for the bride. It was a time for following after holiness and for preparing for her future life with her husband. Besides spiritual preparation there were also physical garments to get ready and other things that would be needed in her household. This preparation was not a solitary one though. The entire community would join the bride in her preparations.

As believers we are also bridal attendants. We have a job to help the bride prepare for her wedding day. We see this in the parable Jesus gives in Matthew 25:1-13. We have work to do. But what is this work? Is it attending worship services when I feel like it or it’s convenient? Is it being involved in every single aspect of church life so that the church couldn’t really function without my being present (or so I believe)? What is the motivation for one attending the bride of Christ? What is the mission?

The work of the bridal attendants is to serve and care for the church so that she can complete her special call. She is called to be holy, set apart like her betrothed. She is called to hold forth the truth, the Word, to be a witness of who God is to a world that does not know Him. . She is called to love the lost world and share with them the message that Jesus has made a way for them to be in right relationship with God. She is called to train up believers so that they bear the image of Christ. She is called to love her beloved steadfastly and above all others and to remain pure for Him, not bowing her heart in idolatry.

Those are some pretty lofty endeavors. The exciting thing is that God has called you to have a role in completing this mission. What’s even better is that the mission’s success really doesn’t depend on my efforts. John 15 shows us that God wants to supply all we need to fulfill this mission. He wants to be the power source for all that we do. We are to live connected to Him, in awareness of Him, and in dependence on Him.

Take a few moments to think about these things and talk to God about them.

1. What is your attitude toward serving the church?

2. Why are you a part of a church? What is your mission?

3. What is your power source for fulfilling that mission?

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