Have you ever gone somewhere that had requirements for dress? You had to get all dressed up and meet certain requirements to go? Or a place where you had to be a certain type of person to be there in the first place?
No? Me neither.
I’ve felt that way before though. Perhaps you have also. Maybe you have gone somewhere and just felt like you weren’t “good enough” or dressed right. I know I have.
Church can feel like that sometimes, cant it? Or we can at least perceive that is how it is.
There is this feeling in the air that you have to dress a certain way or be a certain type of person to go to church.
Maybe in some churches that’s true or maybe we have been really bad at communicating the real truth.
So allow me to clear the air about Grace Baptist Church. Maybe you’re reading this and you’re a covenant member or maybe you are someone who is thinking about being a guest with us. What should you expect at Grace?
Well let me tell you what kind of people you won’t find at our church:
You will not find anyone who is perfect or righteous or really good or really moral. You won’t find anyone who “has it all together”. You won’t find anyone who is primp and proper. You won’t find anyone who has won the Christian of the year award. You won’t find anyone who doesn’t have a past. You won’t find anyone who doesn’t sin every day.
You won’t find anyone who can save themselves through their good deeds. You won’t even find anyone who can save themselves through their bad deeds.
You won’t find anyone who doesn’t sometimes lose their temper. You won’t find anyone who doesn’t sometimes say the wrong thing or think the wrong thing or do the wrong thing.
So what kind of people will you find at Grace?
You will find ragamuffins and beggars and losers.
You will find people who are broken and know it.
You will find tax collectors and sinners.
You will find people who sometimes are selfish. People who struggle in relationships sometimes. People who take their eyes off Jesus sometimes. People who have a past. People who sin every day.
People who want to be “good” but mess up often. People who say the wrong things sometimes. People who think the wrong things sometimes. People who lose their temper sometimes.
You will find people who were dead and knew they couldn’t bring themselves back to life. People who realized they were losers, and no matter how hard they tried, they couldn’t make themselves winners.
You will find people who, no matter how hard they try to “dig deep” and “pull themselves up by their boot-straps”, couldn’t save themselves.
You will find beggars who want to tell other beggars where to find bread.
You will find people who need a Savior who is in the “bringing dead, losers back to life” business.
People who need Someone who welcoming lost sons and daughters is their cup of tea.
Thankfully, I know such a Person.
You see, at Grace, we aren’t on a mission to show off our righteousness (or lack thereof). We are on a mission to tell people about Someone who was righteous for us.
Maybe sometime you could join us. What you will see is people in desperate need of grace upon grace upon grace from a merciful and loving God.
What you will hear is people singing together to the only One who deserves glory and fame. And sometimes, we sing out of tune.
What you will hear is the truth that, even though we are more sinful than we realize, we are more loved and accepted by God in Christ than we ever dared hope.
We won’t expect you to be awesome cause we aren’t awesome. But we can tell you about Someone who was awesome for us.
Join us, at Grace, only ragamuffins and beggars are allowed because that’s all that there are.
Thank God for His grace! Thank God for Jesus!
God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation. –Romans 5:8-11, ESV