Easily one of my favorite passages is Hebrews 10:24 which states, “Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.” In fact, that has been the unofficial theme verse of the Fellowship of Cowboys for many years. Who among us wouldn’t love a verse that mentions spurring? As cowboys we are among the few in the English-speaking world that can properly understand and explain that spurring literally is encouraging (sometimes strongly encouraging) a horse to do what’s right.
In the context of this passage we can obviously see that we, as believers, are to spur one another (that is, other believers) to do two things. The first action that we are to spur towards is love. We’ll prayerfully discuss this at a later time but for now the simplest definition of the biblical action of love is “placing someone else’s needs before your own.” That is precisely what the Father did for us when Jesus died on the cross. He placed our needs before His own. The second action that we are to spur other believers towards is good deeds. That is pretty simple…doing good stuff! I am convinced that we are to do these good deeds not out of guilt or because we have too but because of the love and grace that Christ has shown us and because of our love for each other. The two spurring actions go hand-in-hand: we love because of Christ’s love and because we love we are to share good deeds with each other.
As you read the context of Hebrews 10 you might notice that the verse immediately following verse 24 is another highly quoted verse. This verse is usually quoted by our pastors when we’ve missed a Sunday or two when we are on the road. Hebrews 10:25 reads, “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—all the more as we see the Day approaching.” I mention this verse because one inescapable truth can be found in the context of Hebrews chapter 10: We are to regularly gather together as believers for mutual encouragement!
Over the past several years, as I have served with the FCC I noticed that the strongest witnesses for the Lord are often people who have a strong commitment to their local churches. That does not mean that they are in their church every Sunday—but when they can be, they are active in their home churches. In fact, when Grant Adkisson, our president, was initially asked to help with some FCC ministries it was because of his great history of service as a pastor of a local church. Today, one of our most active chapters has members who are all equally active in their home churches. It is obvious that as believers we need to be in a position where we can spur other believers and they can spur us. We call that mutual edification and it happens within the ministry of a local church. It seems obvious: You cannot grow in Christ without a commitment to a home church!
I use the term home church because that is what it is…a home. The nature of the rodeo world means that we are on the road quite a bit but in the end we always come home. So it is with your home church. You may miss several Sundays away from home and have the opportunity to be blessed and encouraged by a service at a rodeo or a chapter event but you’ll always need to come home. Your home church will be the church that keeps you accountable in your relationship with the Lord even after a long season on the road.
Do you have a home church? If not, find one! As you search for a home church I encourage you to search for one that displays these qualities:
- Teaching – mentioned around 30 times in the New Testament, most notably in Acts 2:42
- Praying – Acts 2:42, 1 Timothy 2:1-8 and Ephesians 6:18-19
- Singing – Colossians 3:16 and Ephesians 5:19
- Eating – sounds crazy but eating together builds a bond; Acts 2:42
- Giving – both financially and physically (possessions and time); 1 Corinthians 16:2 and 2 Corinthians 9:6-7, James 1:26-28, Galatians 6:6, Galatians 6:10, and Philippians 4:19
- Reading of Scripture – 1 Timothy 4:13
- Ministering to one another – do a simple word search on either love or encourage and you’ll see that nearly 30 times in the New Testament we are commanded to love one another in one form or another
This is not an exhaustive list but it covers the major things that you should see happening in your home church or fellowship.
As you continue to serve the Lord and grow in your knowledge of His Word my prayer is that you will continue to grow in your commitment to and activity in your home church!