I Have Always Dreamed of a Church...
I have always dreamed of a church where love is boundless.
I’m talking about the kind of love that is self-sacrificial and continues to give to others, though it is personally costly. A love that is motivated by the love Christ has for us.
I have always dreamed of a church where joy is always present. Not because we suddenly have all our problems, challenges, and difficulties disappear, but because we are continually finding in Christ and in each other a depth of relationship that overwhelms us and strengthens us to endure any hardship that might come our way. I dream of a church that continually experiences an overcoming joy, where laughter is heard often and the countenances of its people radiate the hope they have found in Christ!
I have always dreamed of a church which truly experiences the “peace that passes all understanding.” Where members are truly in harmony and at peace with one another in spite of racial differences, economic differences, and age differences.
I have always dreamed of a church where patience is a constant virtue expressed in the lives of its members. Anger is rarely present. And when anger is present, it would be a righteous anger that doesn’t seek personal vindication or satisfaction but would be directed toward seeing injustices corrected for the benefit of others.
I have always dreamed of a church where there is a supernatural kindness expressed through its members. Where all of its members' interactions with others are seasoned with the reality of Jesus Christ’s grace, mercy, and forgiveness in our own lives. Where gospel truth constantly inspires us to be exceedingly generous in spirit and action toward those around us.
I have always dreamed of a church where its members overcome, through the power of the Holy Spirit, our sinful tendency toward selfishness. Where members are marked instead by an amazing goodness toward those inside the church and those outside the church. Where the people of the church live in such a good fashion that it draws others who don’t know Jesus Christ to discover the source of this goodness in us.
I have always dreamed of a church where its members could always count on one another. A church where the people truly believe that “their word is their bond” because faithfulness is a core commitment rooted deeply within each heart.
I have always dreamed of a church where the members are strong: physically, mentally, and spiritually. Yet these people are marked by an amazing gentleness with one another. Words are chosen carefully. Actions are always evaluated, and carried out only if they bring benefit and blessing to others.
I have always dreamed of a church where its members are continually growing in the area of personal self-control. Where each member, through the power of the Holy Spirit living within him, continually seeks to bring his flesh under the control of God. Where its members learn to be deeply satisfied with God and with each other.