IF MY PEOPLE, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV)
To illustrate that going to church does not make someone a Christian, I often use the phrase. "I can go to McDonald's, but that does not make me a Big Mac." I have been using that phrase so much that one of my co-workers recently asked me, "If going to church does not make you a Christian, what does?"
Before I could answer her, someone said, "To be Christian, you need to believe in Christ." Right? I answered, "Wrong," for if that were true, satan would be a Christian, for he believes in Christ. My friends, just as not everything that shines is gold, not everyone who professes to follow Jesus is a member of the family of God.
Jesus once asked a group of people, "Why do you call me Lord and do not do what I say? On another occasion, He also said, "Many will say to me, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy, drive out demons, and perform many miracles in your name?' Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'
Anyone can act as a Christian for a while, but a true Child of God produces the fruit of his salvation. It is so sad that people in the world no longer recognize who the followers of Jesus are because we act so much like them. We live in fear just like them and react in our flesh, sometimes even worse than those who do not know Christ.
My family, it is time for us, the People of God, to shine the light of Christ. It is time to say no to sin and yes to righteousness. It is time for the church to return to believing and receiving miracles. The power of God has not changed or gotten weaker. We, the church, did. Let us stop just going to church and start being the church.
The Bible tells us that if the people of God called by His name pray, God will hear them and do mighty deeds. However, before we start calling on His name and asking Him to hear us, we must ask ourselves, "Are we His people?"