Gather • Devotion #3: We Miss You

Dr. Randy T. Johnson


“For though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ.” Colossians 2:5

I know there are people reading this devotion who due to health or their work schedule cannot attend church gatherings. They understand this verse and want to tell fellow believers, “For though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit.” Some of you now have more time to pray for others and send notes of encouragement. Please know, we miss you.

Some others have a different story. They got used to not attending church gatherings and liked the convenience of watching online whenever they desire. Hebrews 10:24-25 says, “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” It is easy and dangerous to get into the habit of not attending church gatherings. Please break the habit. We want to encourage you and need your encouragement.

Paul missed attending church gatherings with friends in several places. He not only missed those in Colossae, but in Romans 1:8-12, he references wanting to see the believers in Rome, “First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed in all the world. For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I mention you always in my prayers, asking that somehow by God’s will I may now at last succeed in coming to you. For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you – that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.” While Paul is away, he is praying for them. However, he wants to get back to them to give and get. He wants “to strengthen” them, but also looks forward to being “mutually encouraged.”

The River Church is one church with multiple locations. It is a blessing that we can go to our website and find several sermons on the same topic in each series. However, this does not replace the interactive worship that takes place in person with one another.

If you cannot make it to a gathering, please keep in touch through the online presence. However, if you are able to attend, we welcome you back. We need you and you need us. We miss you.