How's that saying go?
"An ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure?"
I believe that.
I got a chance to see that mantra up close and in person after working over 10 years in the manufacturing industry.
I've seen people spend over a $100,000 on a piece of equipment and never maintain it.
They just ignore it until there's a problem and usually, the problem could have been solved a lot easier if it had been detected earlier.
That oil leak you see in your driveway isn't going to 'magically' disappear.
That's why it's very important to go through regularly scheduled maintenance procedures.
To make sure all your fluid levels are adequate, all your belts are tightened, all your filters are clean.
It's not just about machinery either. This same mantra applies to dental and medical issues.
If you get your teeth cleaned twice a year, you're a LOT less likely to need a root canal down the road.
It's not always an easy thing, staying properly 'maintained'.
Especially if you're like me, I have an aversion to needles and doctors who want to probe their finger into my anal cavity or even worse, the ol Q-tip through the urethra.
Just the thought gives me the creeps and makes me want to shudder. Yech!!
People have different levels that they take their spiritual faith onto the medical realm.
I ain't go waste my time going to no doctor!! When God is ready to call me home, I'm going home!!
It sounds like a 'righteous' response, but yet I've never seen anyone just literally get sick one day and die immediately.
There's usually a process of warning signs that happens. Symptoms that appear that let a person know, 'Something ain't right with me."
I spent the first 2 years of my marriage as a non-church attender.
I knew enough of the Bible to be dangerous.
"I don't have to go to nobody's church to go to heaven!!"
Which is true. Church attendance is not a Biblical requirement of salvation as is displayed by Jesus' response to the non-church going thief on the cross next to Him:
"And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise." - Luke 23:42-43
I used that thief on the cross many times when my mom or dad or one of my grandmothers tried to chide me for not attending regular praise & worship services.
But then one day, I started leaking oil.
As most leaks, it started kinda small. Like a drop or two in the driveway.
Eventually, it grew into a full blown oil puddle.
But I ignored it, somehow hoping it would just magically stop and go away, because I just didn't want to deal with it at the time.
The check oil light in the car was never meant to be a maintenance reminder. It's actually a functional ALERT for something that you shoulda already taken care of.
A $20 oil change is a lot cheaper than having to buy a new motor.
So often, people wait until they have a major crisis going on, divorce, sickness, unemployment before they take their heart in to get worked on by God.
It is often in these times of desperation that you end up going before the church, crying and slanging snot everywhere, asking for forgiveness, asking for the church to help you from getting your house foreclosed on.
Not to say that church attendance or faith will keep you from foreclosure.
But the thing I do know, is that your faith will keep you from going crazy or having a complete meltdown when you do go through life's trials and obstacles.
I do attend regular church services now. Good ol Baptist folks..YES-SUH!!
But when my time came to shake my pastor's hand, as he extended me that right hand of fellowship, it wasn't about money or job or sickness at the time, it was just about me and my commitment to God.
Since that day, I've grown to NEED church services. I need corporate prayer, praise, preaching and teaching.
From Devotion to the Benediction, I feel blessed to be in the house of the Lord.
I know God's church is not a physical one confined by walls.
God's Church is the body of Christ. The Believers who stand up on faith are the Church.
So, if you have breath in your body, and the strength to stand up and walk, and gas in your gas tank..why can't you give the Lord some of your time?
There are 168 hour in a week and people can't find the time, love or energy to give God 1 hour? (2 in a Baptist morning service)
I dunno, people are strange.
It's almost as if they think God is a damn fool.
Of course, I'm not talking about those who don't believe in God and His Word, that's a whole different scenario altogether.
But those who believe, need to stay properly maintained.
Give Him some time mane. Fo real.
"Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching." - Heb 10:23-25
I learned that once you accept Christ, you can no longer limit yourself by the thief on the cross or any other mortal.
Salvation is not a static position for the Believer, we have to strive toward Christ in our walk.
On the Southside, we just call it, 'maintaining'.