Further Out

My husband and I were watching a movie the other night. A man had taken a woman on a date and asked her if she wanted to go for a ride in his boat. He then picked up his cell and tried to make a call. No coverage. He then told her they needed to go “further out” to get more cell coverage. She had no problem with that. What she didn’t know was that the man was trying to get her away from shore so that he could kill her. The audience knew it but she did not. We all wanted to say, “Don’t go further out. Stay near shore where there are other people and it is safe!”

The audience knew the man did not mean “further out,” he meant “further away.” Further away from safety. People that don’t have our best interest at heart want to do that. They try to isolate us from the people that love us, i.e. our friends and family, so that we have no one to turn to if we need help.

In life though, it is just not people that want to do that. As believers in Jesus Christ, we have an enemy that wants to isolate us from other believers. For a Christian, it is a dangerous place because we need other believers to pray for us and support us. During the pandemic, there was a time when everyone stayed home from church because the churches were closed. However, when they opened back up, everyone did not return.

According to George P. Wood in his article, “Six Reasons People Aren’t Coming Back to Church,” there are several reasons people are not returning. Top of the list is Covid Hesitancy. Many are afraid to return and be exposed to large groups of people. That is understandable. Others though are not returning because of Inertia. They have gotten used to staying home and it is hard to get them moving again to get up and attend church. The third reason is Weak Attachment. The people did not have a strong attachment to Christ or their church and the cares of the last year have strangled the little faith they had.

Anyone looking at those that are getting “further away” from their church know they are in a dangerous place. The seas of life are rough and we need other believers to help us through the difficult times. We need good solid teaching from the Bible to ground us during the uncertain times we live in. The Scripture speaks to us in Hebrews 10:24-25: “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as in the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much more as you see the Day approaching.”

Are you in the boat? Is someone taking you further out, further away from other believers? Turn back while you still can! Better yet, get out of the boat and stay close to shore, close to others where there is safety in numbers. We don’t want to end up being a statistic. A statistic such as Lifeway Research found: After the Pandemic, 6 percent of churchgoers said they would attend less often, 2 percent said they would now attend rarely and 1 percent said they would never go back to church.

Further out? Further Away? Not on your life!

Six Reasons People Aren’t Coming Back to Church. George P. Wood. July 23, 2021. Influencemagazine.com

Image by jplenio. Courtesy of Pixabay.

20 thoughts on “Further Out

  1. So very true! I’ve seen many people who are very reluctant to return to in-person worship. I still go to church, I still wear a mask, and I try very hard to sit away from all the families with little kids who are not vaccinated. But I’m there! I guess I’m fortunate that my church is bursting at the seams despite the statistics that indicate otherwise.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh my gosh yes! This has been so on my heart. I see myself in the slippery side. The proverbial frog in the pot!! We need to awaken ourselves back to reality for sure. When you think about COVID, it really did stun us into fear but we will arise again! Thanks for the reminder Val!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This scripture came to mind –

    Let’s hold firmly to the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful;and let’s consider how to encourage one another in love and good deeds,not abandoning our own meeting together, as is the habit of some people, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near. – Hebrews 10:23-25 NASB

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Those statistics you mentioned at the end of the post do seem sad. Personally, ever since the pandemic, I’ve been attending church more regularly than ever before. I don’t want to miss a week! It’s like I’ve realized that gathering together isn’t guaranteed, so I want to get my fill every week before the government takes it away from me again. My spirit craves to be with others who love Jesus, too.

    Liked by 1 person

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