True Story: the church I attended when I was a teenager had been added on to many times, and so it had two sanctuaries, an old one that seated maybe 100 people and a newer one perhaps three times as large. The congregation met in the older, smaller building when attendance was expected to be down.
The church sat in the countryside, but there happened to be two homes directly across the road. One of the families who lived across the road attended regularly – or, I should say, the wife and kids did. The man of the house bragged that his life was such a mess that, if he ever walked through the church doors, the roof would cave in.
So one winter day, when services were being held in the older, smaller, and not-so-well maintained sanctuary, the man crossed the street to join his wife and children at church. The very second he walked into the foyer, the false ceiling collapsed on his head.
No one was hurt, and everyone got a good laugh, and he did stay for the entire service. I am unsure, though, if he ever felt compelled to give his heart to Christ.
Here is what people fail to understand about God’s love. He loves you as you are. You don’t have to clean up your life before you give it to God. Christ says in Luke 5:32:
“I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (NIV).
Are you addicted to porn? Christ is calling you.
Are you a liar and thief? Christ is calling you.
Do you have an uncontrollable temper? Christ is calling you.
Are you hated by everyone who knows you? Christ knows you better than anyone and He loves you. He’s calling you.
Are you drowning in an alternative lifestyle? Christ is calling you.
Christ loves us as we are. He proves it in this way: even while we are full of filthy sin, He died for us… to rescue us from that sin… and from death (Roman’s 5:8, paraphrased).
Worried that the roof will cave in if you step inside a church? Don’t worry. Come anyway. Come as you are, and give all your sins and worries to God.
The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life. – Revelation 22:17 NIV