Real Love

This morning, I preached about those who have religion but lack a relationship with Christ. These are the ones who go to church to impress with their suits, big Bibles, fancy prayers, and “Christianese” (a language foreign to only “true believers”). These are the ones who have to go to fancy buildings and follow rigid structures. They are the first to rise up and speak against anything that doesn’t fit their way of doing things. They hate kids being kids. They don’t want others who aren’t “their kind of people” to be bussed in or drive themselves to their pristine facility. God forbid you have a past. If you do, it might be best to try to hide it lest someone approach you about it or use you as a prayer request in their gossip circles.

With this introduction, do you understand why people are still choosing a relationship with Christ over the institutional church. Some say you cannot have it. Because the traditional church almost burned me, I asked God to raise up a safe place for people to be real and be loved. A place where the recovering addict will be loved even during a relapse. A place where we don’t put our stamp of approval on sin while loving people to a place of restoration and victory.

The bottom line is that people want real love. Not a fake “love you”. Religion leaves you empty. Christ satisfies. I think this song by Blanca says it better than I can.

Author: Matthew Winters (The Comeback Pastor)

Born and raised in Portsmouth, VA, I eventually landed in upstate SC because when God calls I move. I gave my life to Christ in 1987 and surrendered to the call to ministry in 1997. I am a three-time graduate from Liberty University and Theological Seminary: BS in Religion (2003), the MA in Religion (Leadership concentration - 2006), and the Master of Divinity (Pastoral Ministries - 2013). I have served as a worship leader and senior pastor in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia since 1996. After experiencing a divorce, God graciously gave me my wife, Jennifer, whom I married in September 2015. Between the two of us, we have 6 children. I am the Lead/Founding Pastor of Overcomers Church in Walhalla, SC, a brand new church plant that is helping those who have been overcome by life to become Overcomers in Christ. Jennifer and I both love people and long to see them enter into a relationship with Christ and walk in the power of His Spirit. I pray that these thoughts I share will challenge and inspire you to greater heights and deeper depths for the glory of Christ.

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