Mike walks us through three areas of caution. Of the following cautions, have you ever felt tempted to act on any of these? What led to you feeling this way?
- Failure to be obedient to God’s Word
- Leaving a church because of pride, control, or unrealistic expectations of staff or leaders that only Jesus can truly meet
- “The Disappearing Act”: Appearing to be deeply involved and growing in your faith and then disappear out of nowhere
“I am the first to see her when she appears at the back of the church. But she snaps heads sidewards with every row she passes . . . Row by row, people turn to face the center aisle. They gasp, they cry, they laugh, they beam, they rejoice. The bride stands us on our heads. She is the center of the wedding and radiates the hope and dreams on that day. Maybe that’s why God chose the symbol of the Bride to represent the church. Christ meant for His church to turn heads, to turn the world upside down, and to draw attention to itself as the location of hope and belief in a world shot through with cynicism.”
—Charles R. Swindoll, The Bride: Renewing our Passion for the Church
How does this align with your view of the local church? How has your perspective on the local church changed throughout your life?
How might you place too much value on the fruit of your relationship with your Heavenly Father and not enough value on the relationship itself? In what ways can you relate to Mike’s story example of thinking too often “Watch me, daddy” instead of “Hold me, papa”?