Back to Where We Belong! Jesus speaks to the heart of our current Reset Sermon Series with these words, “‘Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love. Remember the height from which you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first’” (Rev. 2:4-5). These words were first written to the believers in Ephesus, who otherwise were commended for working hard and standing firm in the midst of difficult circumstances. This was a very active church. Yet, somehow, in their season of doing good things as the church they had forgotten what it means to be the church.
It has been said that when a church loses its “why,” it will also lose its way. We might wonder how this could happen, but if it happened in Ephesus, it can happen anywhere. Remember, this church had been led by Timothy and the apostle John. So, what does it mean to lose our first love? Often this is a slow fade in which a church begins to drift from Jesus and His mission. A church may be doing good things, but if it is missing the best thing, then Jesus commands us to repent and turn back to Him.
We do this by holding fast to our gospel-centered values. If we truly love Jesus, we must do all we can to maintain these values: (1) Growing in our walk with Him; (2) Being outwardly focused to love the people He loves; (3) Depending on the power of His Spirit to do what He loves; (4) Putting people over programs to achieve the mission He loves; (5) Seeking excellence in all we do to give Him our best as He has given to us; and (6) Leading courageously in our commitment to Him. Consider how well you are upholding these values, because together we are His church! -Jason