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ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL

By Barry Cameron
April 23, 2021

Jack Graham, in his new book, REIGNITE: Fresh Focus For An Enduring Faith, wrote these lines:

“I was absentmindedly flipping channels waiting for both baseball games I was watching to come back from commercial break when I caught sight of a pack of elephants tromping through the tall grass of the African savanna, looking delighted to be enjoying the sunshine and warmth. But the ominous music track cued me that something nefarious was afoot. Baseball or not, I had to stick around to find out what was about to go down.

“Of the dozen or so elephants on the screen, two were calves, and as the throng made its way across the plains, those babies would tuck themselves away in the center of the group. But when the herd stopped to graze, a flock of white birds scuttling around on the ground caught one calf’s attention, and off the little guy went in search of the chase, pining for some adventure, craving a taste of independence from his group. A few moments later, after the birds took the air once more, the baby elephant realized how far he had roamed from his pack. He stuck his little trunk up into the air and blew a weak, stuttering trumpet, which was likely what alerted the nearby pride of lions that dinner was being served.

“As the elephant herd started moving again, the calf bumbled his way back toward the fold. But before he could get there, the lions made their move. Now the music really got intense as a hulking bull elephant ran frantically around the herd, trumpeting warnings and kicking up dust. The calf’s mama made a beeline for her baby while seemingly yelling at the other mamas to gather round. The big bull squared off against the lions while the females stood their ground, and in the end the lions retreated, figuring they’d go pick an easier fight. The calf was spared, the herd safe, and the elephants continue on their path.”

1 Peter 5:8 warns us, “Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”

Over a year ago, millions of people who used to be involved in their local church suddenly found themselves isolated and alone. In an instant, all the demons of hell heard the dinner bell ringing and sprang into action. The result has been catastrophic globally, physically, maritally, mentally, emotionally, financially, and most of all, spiritually. 

Our government said, “Churches were not essential” and shut them down, at least from meeting physically. The resilience of Christ’s Church to bounce back from that ruling and still be able to provide worship, ministry, and connection for people all over the world is absolutely amazing. However, the devil’s damage was done and the ramifications are still ongoing.

"Truth is, the church is absolutely essential. We need the Church. All of us do."

Dr. Graham said, “When we isolate and insulate and cut ourselves off from the protection God has ordained for us, we make ourselves needlessly vulnerable to attack. We give Satan ground we may never get back."

Truth is, the church is absolutely essential. We need the Church. All of us do. All the time. Because we're in a REAL WAR with a REAL ENEMY and, like that baby elephant, when we’re alone, we are most vulnerable. We need each other way more than we could ever possibly know and understand. 

Something powerful and supernatural happens every time we gather together as the Church. Whether it’s in a corporate worship setting on Sundays or our small group during the week. The devil knows that and that’s why he does everything he can to discourage us, distract us and drag us away. 

So let me encourage you to do two things:

1) Get a copy of Jack Graham’s book. You can get one in our bookstore, The Disciple Shop, or order one online at Amazon. 

2) Get back in church. No matter what, when or even who the devil used to drag you away, get back to church this week. You need the Church and your Church needs you.

JESUS said, “I will build My Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18).

© 2021. Barry L. Cameron

1 Graham, Jack. Reignite: Fresh Focus for an Enduring Faith. Bethany House Publishers, a Division of Baker Publishing Group, 2021. Pg. 93-94.

2 Graham, Jack. Reignite: Fresh Focus for an Enduring Faith. Bethany House Publishers, a Division of Baker Publishing Group, 2021. Pg. 97.

BARRY CAMERON

Senior Pastor

Barry Cameron is a devoted father and husband, bestselling author, dynamic communicator, and Senior Pastor of Crossroads Christian Church. Crossroads has a gorgeous, 150-acre campus in Grand Prairie, Texas. More than 8000 people call Crossroads their church home. Barry’s latest book, The Road to Financial Freedom, came out in the fall of 2020 and is available on Amazon. It’s another game changer for individuals and families who want to fix their finances once and for all.

Barry and his wife, Janis, have three children: Katie, Matt and Kelli. A daughter-in-law, Lindley and a son-in law, Johnny. They also have two grandsons, Will and Levi. Their family has been completely debt free since November 15, 2001.

Crossroads Christian Church has been debt free since November 9, 2008.

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