Arthur Rouner, under whom I served in Minnesota, was fond of referring to Congregationalism as “The Pilgrim Way.” We are spiritual descendants of the Mayflower Pilgrims. But one of our characteristics is that in a sense, Congregational Christians “own” their church. This is certainly true legally, as the building and other property is not subject to an outside authority.

But what is more important is that when we join our name to the local Church Covenant, we take responsibility for that church. Just as Jesus said, “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord’ and not do what I say?” (Luke 6:46), so we cannot be satisfied with mere spectator or consumer religion. God is calling us all to find our place in the Church, which is the offensive weapon God uses to advance His kingdom of Justice, Truth, and Love in this world.

How is God calling you to demonstrate your ownership?