Last summer I had a rare opportunity. For several weeks in a row, I was able to visit other churches on a Sunday morning. As a fulltime preacher, it was an unusual and cool experience.
But there was a part I didn’t like. I didn't like simply being an observer. I didn't like going in unknown and disconnected. And what bothered me the most was, because I was just visiting for that one Sunday, my church experience was limited to the hour and half between the time I got out of my car and the time I got back in. Church for me was over when I hit the parking lot.
And to be honest, I didn’t like it. Nevertheless, that is how many Americans do church. For them, it is a car door-to-car door experience. A lot of people have been raised with the notion that there’s going to be a reward in heaven for church attendance.
But nowhere does the Bible say that. Instead it teaches that God wants to use us, His people, to "spread everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him." 2 Cor. 2:14
Here's the way we framed it last Sunday: Don’t just go to church; be the church wherever you go.