Punctuality

Ecclesiastes 5:1

1Guard your steps when you go to the house of God.\ Go near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools, who do not know that they do wrong.

Often, pastors thank God for those who come early to worship services and pray that those late comers would be safe on their way. Such manner is not entirely appreciated by everyone.  A churchgoer, who was very punctual in his attendance, mentioned his annoyance during an associational meeting of church leaders and pastors held in their church building. He arrived early, and then he complained that pastors and church leaders from different churches were late, and uttered that he cannot appreciate when pastors pray for late comers. Such display of attitude exemplified that he was prepared for confrontation and not to glorify the Lord. He did not say it out loud but one may interpret that he was waiting for appreciation of his punctuality in every occasion. Or maybe, he was not aware of what Jesus said in Matthew 9:12-13, 12It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.

Late comers who struggle to be punctual during worship services are seriously in need of much prayer. Apparently, they have not maximized their experience of God’s graces just yet. Those who are punctual should be careful and wary that they won’t grow proud of their punctuality. It’s by God’s grace and not by human effort that believers can be punctual to come and worship the Lord. Cheerful punctuality is joyful faithfulness produced by Christ’s Spirit in the believer’s life.

It reminds us in Galatians 6:1-4, 1If someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted.  2Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.  3If anyone thinks they are something when they are not, they deceive themselves.  4Each one should test their own actions. Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else.

Lord Jesus, let my life be a testimony of Your grace.

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