I Am a Church Member

January 25, 2012

UPDATE: Listen to the podcast episode about this post.

I am a church member.

I will seek to be a source of unity in the church. I know there are no perfect pastors, staff, or other church members. But neither am I. I will not be a source of gossip or dissension. One of the greatest contributions I can make is to do all I can in God’s power to help keep the church in unity for the sake of the gospel.

I am a church member.

I will not let my church be about my preferences and desires. That is self-serving. I am in this church to serve others and to serve Christ. My Savior went to a cross for me. I can deal with any inconveniences and matters that are just not my preference or style.

I am a church member.

I will pray for my pastor every day. His work is never-ending. His days are filled with constant demands for his time; with the need to prepare sermons; with those who are rejoicing in births; with those who are traveling through the valley of the shadow of death; with critics; with the hurts and hopes of others; and with the need to be a husband and a father. My pastor cannot serve our church in his own power. I will pray for God’s strength for him and his family every day.

I am a church member.

I like the metaphor of membership. It’s not membership as in a civic organization or a country club. It’s the kind of membership given to us in 1 Corinthians 12: “Now you are the body of Christ and individual members of it” (I Corinthians 12:27). Because I am a member of the body of Christ, I must be a functioning member, whether I am an “eye,” an “ear,” or a “hand.” As a functioning member, I will give. I will serve. I will minister. I will evangelize. I will study. I will seek to be a blessing to others. I will remember that “if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it” (1 Corinthians 12:26).

I am a church member.

I will lead my family to be good members of this church as well. We will pray together for our church. We will worship together in our church. We will serve together in our church. And we will ask Christ to help us fall deeper in love with this church, because He gave His life for her.

I am a church member.

This membership is a gift. When I received the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ, I became a part of the body of Christ. I soon thereafter identified with a local body and was baptized. And now I am humbled and honored to serve and to love others in our church. I pray that I will never take my membership for granted, but see it as a gift and an opportunity to serve others, and to be a part of something so much greater than any one person or member.

I am a church member.

And I thank God that I am.

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  • Sharon Sikes says on

    I would like to be put on your e-mail list.

  • I would like to reference this as well. Just had a meeting about this with our senior leadership team last night. Very timely. Thanks, PM.

  • Bart Barber says on

    I really like this. Good stuff.

  • Agreed on all accounts. My family is praying about staying where we are, or moving to another body of believers. We have been in the same body for 30 years, so this is not something we take lightly. Please pray that we make a decision that honors God.

    • Hey Kathryn,

      So is it over doctrine? As a pastor myself we had folks leave when I became the pastor. One’s in fact that voted on me to come as pastor. I find it really sad that because our church and one’s like ours who don’t have all the STUFF the big churches do, people leave giving the lame excuse that God is leading them elsewhere. If you do leave please don’t blame God…

      • I believe that it should always be about God whether we leave or not. I believe it is crucial to be a member of the church He wants me to be a part of and just not where I feel good about going. My husband and I were called out from a good church to another to do ministry there that was needed. It is all about where God can use me and not where I want to go……

  • Thom, I am a frequent reader and fan of your blog, and I think this is the best one you’ve ever done. This is going in our Sunday bulletin. Thanks!

    • beloved in Christ
      Greetings to you in the most powerful of our lord
      and savior Jesus Christ. I am very happy to talk to you today.id not
      know who you are. But we Have been praying f or the last few days. I
      want to say who we are my name is Mrs. jayamma, am 38 my husband’s
      name john victor aged 40. Our sir name is Chadalavada. We are working
      (Gospel) in 10 villages. Ours is an agency area. There is a city
      jangaredy gudem which is 15 kilometers far away from us. It is a city.
      All of our villagers are agricultural laborers. They are very poor. We
      are working for the Lord among them. While I was praying with fasting
      today friend’s likes to send their old clothing please we have to
      children. Our daughter is padmaja. son is Lewis Kumar). They are
      supporting our work here. My husband is a village doctor (First Aid)
      He got permission from the government to do first Aid treatment. I
      work tailoring and embroidery. I give my tithe to 10 old age mothers.
      Every year on 1st January I used to arrange good food for them, giving
      good India dress (Saree blouse) they will pray for me. Sometimes we go
      to Rajahmundry and Eluru cities to distributed gospel tracts and new
      testaments. My husband encourages me. I am writing this letter with a
      great hope that you will pray for us. We are praying for your family
      and your ministry thank you very much that you’re going through this
      poor woman’s letter. If God talks to you’re for us please pray for us.
      First time I am writing this to you. If any mistakes in this Letter
      please forgives me. Our God always with you
      Yours Indian Sister
      Parampeta (post)534447
      Jangareddygudem (Mandel)..west .Godard deistic.AP .s.India

  • Thom Rainer says on

    All of you are free to use this blog in full or in part. Just give my blog address and me proper credit.

  • AMEN!!! Well said truths here, Thom. Thank you for putting this out there. Could I get permission to use this with “New Member” work in a local church?

  • Great stuff, Thom!
    I’d like to have your permission to use this in our church as well.
    Thanks for your ministry.

  • Thom Rainer says on

    Brandon –
    Thanks. Feel free to use any or all of it.

    • Brian Verslues says on

      Mr. Rainer,

      I saw this article and wanted to ask a question, but realize it is a bit dated. Are you still responding to this post?

  • This is great…I would love to use some of it for a church membership covenant I’m writing!

  • Fantastic entry that every church member ought to read. God Bless you for sharing!

  • Angie B ELKINS says on

    This is really inspiring…I’m sharing on my facebook page. Thank you!

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