Over the years I have struggled as people walk away from my home church. Relocation for employment or family reasons have taken some members. Others have chosen to leave due to differences of opinion, theology, or purposes. Regardless of the reason, it hurts nonetheless.
One particular conversation highlighted the frequency of movement among Christ-followers…
“Good morning!” I greeted a new family as they walked into our church lobby.
“Hello!” They paused, and introductions continued.
“Are you new in the area?” I asked.
“Oh, no, we’ve been here nearly ten years. But we’re looking for a new church.” The wife lowered her voice, and leaned toward me. “I helped with the children’s ministry but don’t tell anyone. That’s why we left. They wouldn’t let me resign. I was way over-committed and exhausted.”
Being on a church staff for 20 years, I have heard many people’s stories. Their faith journeys often include at least one unhealthy church encounter. In my discussions with leaders of other churches, I know this is not unique to my faith community. Church nomads travel into new places of worship every week. Discouraged from a previous church experience yet wanting to be part of the larger family of God, they consider the possibility of new church home.
But is it worth the effort? How necessary is church for the Christian life?
Continue reading, A Love/Hate Relationship with the Church, on The Redbud Post…