I like the idea of being healthy. I know if I practice a healthy lifestyle I will feel better and live longer. I know that to be healthy I need to eat right and exercise. I have friends who belong to health clubs and who enroll in weight loss programs to accomplish their healthy goals. That’s fine for them, but I do not need them to be healthy. I do not like their methods.

Weight loss programs are consumed with rules — always telling you what you can and cannot eat. They are so caught up in numbers that they want you to keep a record of how much you weigh. Gyms are no better. Someone is always yelling at you, telling you what to do. All they do is ask for my money, and they are pretty unrealistic about how often a busy person can attend. So I want to be healthy, but I do not need memberships and programs.

Sure, there is some benefit to being with other people with the same goals and focus. I guess the accountability factor could help. Their programs evidently work. I know healthy people who belong to health clubs and weight management programs. But not me. I do not need them and I do not want them. But I am really serious about being healthy! I will lose weight my way and I will feel better one of these days.

You have figured out by now that if I really had an attitude like that I would not be real serious about being healthy. Nor would I want to be around people who were. You would conclude that I was fooling myself.

In the same way, how can someone say they want to be a follower of Jesus but not have any connection with a church? Maybe being part of a community of believers is not for you. If you do not enjoy being around people passionate for Jesus, if you do not want to be part of programs that help you grow spiritually, and if you get offended by anyone who expects you to live up to the commitment you made … then church is not for you.

The great lie is that you can have Jesus without being involved in a church.
But if you are serious about living a life for Jesus, connect with others who can walk with you on that journey. If you want to talk more about this, or if you want help finding a community of believers, write me at steve@hopeforlife.org.. Or check out our blog at www.hopeforlife.org.

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