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We Are the Church

on August 8, 2014

Here’s the church…

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Here’s the steeple….

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Open the door….

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And here’s all the people!

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Remember doing this as a child?  I do…and I remember smiling at my little wiggly fingers as I turned my hands inside out.  

I also remember wanting to desperately be part of a church- part of a church where our lives intertwined… and we called each other “family”.  I didn’t have a “church home” growing up.  What I didn’t know back then was that church is not technically a building- we are His church.  We are His hands and feet… being Christ-like wherever we go… not just within the four walls of a church.

But what if instead of “going” to church we lived with the idea that we are “bringing church” with us- everywhere we go? We are His church.  

No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be hidden, or under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, so that those who come in may see the light.  Luke 11:33

I made a new friend the other day. I happen to have my girls with me, and they were seated at a table in a coffee shop. As I waited to order coffee, ahead of me in line stood a woman and her friend.  I love people watching and thinking about their lives… where they have been…where are they going….are they happy?  My thoughts wandered and then it was time for me to order.  I ordered my unusual usual drink, and stepped aside to wait for it.  The barista rattled off my unusual usual drink and to my surprise, the lady ahead of me in line reached for the same drink. 

“You ordered this, too?” I asked her.  

“Yes!”  She said with a look of surprise.  

“Why, I guess that makes us coffee soul mates!”  I cheerfully said to her.  

And then the funniest thing happened…we began finishing each other’s sentences.  

“I always order soymilk….”

“…and it’s already so sweet…”

 “it doesn’t even need sugar!” we say at the same time…

and then it dawned on me that I knew her.  

“I know you!  You work at (one of my favorite stores)! 

And then we chatted like old friends. We formally introduced ourselves to each other and that was that.  

“Come see me soon!” She said as we finished our chat. 

“I’ll do that!”

I noticed my girls giving me funny looks from across the way as they watched us chatting.  When I walked over to them, one of them said, “Mom, why do you always have to talk to people?”  

“Because I like making new friends, honey. People need friends.” 

And I certainly don’t think it was a coincidence that I knew her, that we were in the same line together, and that we ordered the exact same drink. That sounds like a God-incident to me.   We are all connected in some way. He just used a good ole’ cup of joe to show me on this particular afternoon.  

People need friends.

And people need Jesus.  

I believe He’s always at work- placing people in our paths and on our hearts to reach out to.  Making small connections with people, building relationships for His purposes. And just maybe they might get to know a little about Jesus by getting to know you- through some small act of kindness, a smile, an encouraging word. Not that we shouldn’t invite people to come to church, but we need to be the church- to everyone we see… everywhere we go.  

 I want my girls to know that being part of His church is so much more than going to a place on a Sunday morning.  It’s so much more than just knowing and loving Jesus. It’s putting this love into action- He wants us to love people and to be His hands and feet… and it begins the moment we step outside those church doors. IMG_0345

Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words- Francis of Assisi  

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20 responses to “We Are the Church

  1. Yes! Thanks for the blast from the past! I do remember doing that. Nice post!

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  2. lorriebowden says:

    Ahhhh! Love this post!! And yes ..I remember doing “Here’s the church!” 🙂 Giant smile!! And I love that you “connected” with your “coffemate!” Great reminder how to LIVE!! ❤ ❤

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  3. Elaine says:

    I well remember doing that too and teaching it to my kids!

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  4. paulfg says:

    Bringing church with us – never thought of it that way!! That is a groovy thought! 🙂

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    • Julie Harris says:

      I have been thinking about that all week long… everywhere I go…Jesus is with me and I am bringing Him into every place I go. It really changes my focus, my perspective- about every detail of my day when I think of it like that… Hope you have a great weekend!!

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  5. T says:

    I remember doing this! loved seeing it and it brought back good memories of childhood. I also loved you post, it was a lovely post. How wonderful to have found your coffee soul mate 🙂

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    • Julie Harris says:

      Thank you so much, T! God continues to show me that we have so much more in common with people than we realize… I was quite surprised when she had ordered the exact same coffee as I had! Soul mates, for sure, lol!!

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  6. Joan Clapp says:

    I must remember to teach Lydia the “church”. I gave her Dad, my Dad’s Bible last weekend. Before I could read, he would read me Bible stories and he drew little picture is the margins so I could figure out the stories. One had two loaves of bread and 5 little fishes, another had a man walking along a path (The Good Samaratain, another a Sycamore tree( where a man climbed to see Jesus.) I loved climbing onto my Daddy’s lap to hear these stories and I am hoping he will read them to Lydia just like her great grandfather did for me!!

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    • Julie Harris says:

      Awww… that is so sweet, Mimi! How wonderful that you have passed down your dad’s Bible to her! I know they will make many great memories reading those stories together- and you will make great memories teaching the hand-church to her 🙂 Love you and miss you!!

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  7. Your kids may not appreciate your making-new-friends skills (now), but they’re learning a valuable lesson from you anyway.

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  8. Sebastian says:

    Hello There!
    I really enjoyed this post and look forward to diving more into your blog. Also, thank you for following my blog at Faith1st Ministries. I hope it has and will continue to be a major blessing in your life. May God richly bless you as you continue to write and blog. Please continue with us on this journey and remember to have Faith 1st because the “just shall live by his faith.” — Sebastian

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  9. Tammi Kale says:

    My heart was positively singing as I read each word of this post! Yes! Exactly how I feel and try each day to live, with eyes wide open to what and who God puts in my path. And it’s astounding how He does that very thing when we’re paying attention! Beautifully inspiring post!

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