Breath in, breath out

In his book Between Sundays, Dr. Richard C. Halverson writes, “The real work of the church is what is done between Sundays when the church is scattered all over the metropolitan area where it is located — in homes, in schools, in offices, on construction jobs, in market places.”

What do you think of that statement? It has some interesting implications. For example, it means that volunteering at your child’s school is just as important as volunteering to teach Sunday School at your church. Knowing the names of and praying for the people who live on your block is just as important as knowing and praying with the people who worship with you. What you learn at school and getting good grades there is just as important as what you learn at church (and even though we’re all about grace, we’re trying to do our best there, too).

Dr. Andy Bartelt, a professor at Concordia Seminary, speaking at a recent church worker’s conference used the image of breathing in and breathing out to describe church work. Gathering together on Sunday is like inhaling, and scattering to go back to our homes and lives and world is like exhaling. We must do both to live. When we’re scattered, God calls us together by His word. When we’re gathered, he prepares us and send us out.

Breath in — breath out. I like that image. What do you think?

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