Family Life Decaying
“ God setteth the solitary in families,” but influences are at work in the world to reverse the process and to dissolve family life 90 that each member can pursue his solitary way.
In certain strata of society, home tends to become a convenient postal address, a shelter for the night, a. place to get good meals, but not a place to live and work in. Here, it seems, can be found what many seek–privileges without responsibilities. Admittedly it is an excellent institution, which must be kept going for the benefit of the family–but the parents can be left to see to that. It is small wonder that when parents die families fall apart, simply because, whilst every member made a convenience of the home, nothing was done to forge ties of common interest strong enough to bind them together.
Is the same tendency manifesting itself in the assembly? Christians, of course, recognize that the assembly is an excellent institution–as a spiritual home it has no equal. It was their spiritual birthplace, and it remains their spiritual address. Here their souls were nourished during the crucial years of their early Christian life hurt; they received invaluable training and got grounded in the Truth. All this can be true and yet the assembly may resemble the pathetic modern home in that, whilst I be members enjoy what it has to offer they then disperse to fallow their own particular interests.
Undoubtedly the assembly must be kept going, but that is not ‘ our. Responsibility that is what the ‘old folk‘ are there for. Of course the Sunday School is a most important and promising held, but ‘we’ are engaged elsewhere. The gospel meeting? Well’, a tot could be done to make it more effective, but ‘we’ cannot spare the time–it is up to the elders. The prayer meeting? Yes, It has almost disappeared in the ‘ churches ‘ it’s splendid that it is still a regular feature of assembly life. The good old stalwarts will be: there–’ we ‘ cannot fit it in.
But the old folk will not he with us for ever. What then?
Of course those who neglect service in the assembly for activities elsewhere, advance what strike them as impressive arguments. Curiously enough, a popular justification for this dispersal of effort is the desirability of Christian unity! The advocates of this policy seem not to have reflected on this strange situation–that movements which professedly have the unifying of Christian effort as their goal, have often resulted in the weakening of what already stood for God. Each organization draws away from the assembly the loyalty of some of its members for the pursuit of special objects, which (desirable enough in themselves) could just as well be achieved in assembly fellowship with more abiding results.
Who was it said” Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish pi ticket u it down with her hands”? Is the family life of the assembly to decay because its members have so divided their interests that, when the old folk pass away, there will be no one to keep it going? What will replace the assembly? Organizations will be no substitute. Where will we find the spiritual home we need? What is going to happen to the next generation? Are our children to enjoy the advantages we have had, or are things to relapse into the conditions our fathers found intolerable? Are we going to destroy the heritage they bought for us at such considerable cost, or preserve it fur our children?
“Home–workers” at Llanfairfechan.
Once again, by the kindness of the Directors, a large number of evangelists from all parts of the British Isles, met for a week’s conference at ” Plas Menai.” We had hoped to give an account of this interesting and profitable week, but, unfortunately, the report did not reach us in time.