Before reading this article, please read Acts chapter 8. I will quote a couple of verses but you really should read the entire chapter of Acts.
First, let me introduce myself. My name is Scott Brewer. I was a chef for seven years. The Lord has called me into full time Christian service as the minister of missions at Mount Vernon Baptist Church in Raleigh.
After reading Ira's article on the Sabbath in last month's newsletter, the Spirit moved on me to write this article.
I ask you this my brothers, do you GO to church or ARE you the church?
In the Spanish language, the word "tempeo" means the BUILDING that we worship in, the word "iglesia" means the BODY OF BELIEVERS that makes up the church. Our English language has done a poor job in distinguishing between the two.
_____--- "On that day a great persecution broke out against the church at Jerusalem, and all EXCEPT the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria." Acts 8:1 ---
Notice how the church began. When the church was persecuted, the Apostles, or the preachers, stayed in Jerusalem. The members were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria.
_____--- "Those who had been scattered preached the word WHEREVER they went." Acts 8:4 ---
Now the American Church today is not facing that type of persecution. However, there are churches in India, China and other countries that ARE! But let's face it: the main reason most of you have to work on Sunday is because our country does not respect Christ and what He stands for. In my parents' generation, most restaurants (hotels excluded) were not allowed to open on Sunday. And those hotels that WERE open, worked real hard to schedule rotating Sundays so their employees could worship. As an ex-Marriott chef I can testify that ain't gonna happen today.
God wastes nothing!! When the first century church was persecuted, He USED that persecution to bring glory to Himself. He will not waste the fact that you are not allowed to support your family and go to Church on a regular basis. YOU ARE THE CHURCH. Start a Bible study within your local Chef association or start a Bible study within your place of employment. Meet in the mornings---meet in the evenings---meet on weekdays. Partner with another Christian and rotate teaching. Plant your own church where you're at right now. That is what the first century church did.
Also stand up for Christ at work. Lifestyle evangelism is only a start. Do not be afraid to use your mouth and witness. Make sure everyone you work with knows that you stand for Jesus. Yes, I know that people will laugh at you, people will talk about you behind your back, and people will act differently around you. HEY, your life is not your own! We are only here for a short while and we will never fit in with the world. Just remember: Persecution = crowns to lay at Jesus' feet.
Finally brothers, [In Saying "Finally", that does not mean much in Christian letters, and it is biblical. In Philippians 3:1 Paul says, "Finally my brothers..." and then ends the letter in 4:23. :>) ] "remember to stay sweet." In the profession God has placed you in, complaining, second-guessing, egos, and pride are the standard. You need to remember that God is in control and be a sweet witness for Christ in your situation. Witness without pushing it down their throats.
Let your co-workers see you pray before you eat, or offer to lead them in prayer before you open or the rush hits. Hum a hymn during stressful times. Offer to pray for them and then DO pray for them. God has put you where you are -- SO MINISTER WHERE HE HAS PLANTED YOU! You are a Christian remnant in a pagan profession. Allow God to use you and give Him the glory for what He shall do.
"Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say rejoice." Philippians 4:4
By Rev. Scott Brewer