Pastor Rick Warren on why Christians need a church family


Every Christian needs a church family. This is what Pastor Rick Warren of Saddleback Church says in his devotional as he encouraged people to seek a community filled with people of like-minded faith.

"You cannot fulfill the five purposes (worship, fellowship, discipleship, ministry, evangelism) on your own. Life is not a solo act," he writes. "The only way you can fulfill God's five purposes in your life is with people in your life who are giving you spiritual input."

Warren says a church family will help Christians centre their lives around God. At the same time, God did not create people to live self-centred lives. When people are used to worshipping on their own, they will find it more difficult to become dedicated children of God, he says.

"His purpose for you is to build your life with Him at the core. You were planned for God's pleasure. He made you to love you, and He wants you to love Him back," says Warren, citing 2 Corinthians 5:14, which reads: "[Christ's] love has the first and last word in everything we do. Our firm decision is to work from this focused centre."

How can Christians know if Christ is the centre of their lives? Warren says the answer to that is easy: It's the time when Christians stop worrying because they have offered everything up to God for guidance and protection.

"There's a word for this: worship. Whenever you focus your life on God, that's called worship. And worship is the antidote for worry. If you want to worry less, worship more," he says.

The most important time for worship is during the Sabbath, says Warren, and it's the ideal time for people to re-focus, re-calibrate, and re-centre their lives on God. And with the help of a church family, Christians can feel more focused as God fulfills His purpose on their lives.