Jan 11, 2011

What About Church?

Wondering what you hope for (expect) in a church?  Is anyone brave enough to tell us?

I know there is no perfect church, as churches become imperfect as soon as people get involved, 
but what would you hope for in a church.  

Or what can you share about what makes yours perfect for you?


Karen said...

I started typing and it got way to long. :-) So I'll try again! These are things we have found in our local church which we switched to about 6-1/2 years ago.
1) Close to our home - perfect for when the kids have activities or evening services. (that being said, I'd rather drive farther to attend a good church, then go to a mediocre church that's close.)
2) Inviting, Welcoming, Accepting. Shortly after we started attending they welcomed us into their gatherings outside of church as well.
3) Small (but growing) - around 115 people. Everyone knows everyone. This can be both good and bad. It's good if the people include newcomers...bad if they are to wrapped up in themselves...it worked well for us. (On the other hand, larger "mega" churches have more programs to offer).
4) Christ centered, biblically based teaching (of course!)
5) Family friendly! Our church family has been very supportive of our adoptions/foster care and our 3-year-old's behavioral issues.

**I'd also note that it seems to take awhile to decide if a church is the right "fit" for you. And my husband fit in much quicker, probably because he knew a few people. It took me at least a year to be comfortable and probably closer to 2 because I am pretty introverted.

Karen said...

wow...that may have been longer then my original comment that I deleted. :-)

Sarah said...

a passion for the Word. Real teaching for our kids, no water downed gospel, as there is no junior Holy Spirit. A place where we can serve using our gifts. Salvation - making an impact in the kingdom of God every week, every service (at least 15 celebrations in each) Bold. Non compromising. Real. Jesus.

Be blessed bunches,

Renata said...

Hi Kimmie
I'm enjoying catching up on your blog - thank you for your lovely comment on my blog - I appreciate your friendship so much!

Great question. When we were considering moving we knew the church we chose to attend was very important! Our main criteria were that it had strong, solid bible teaching. We endeavor to raise our children as strong, solid Christians who want to love & serve the Lord with all their heart - it's important that the church teaching backs up what you are teaching them at home. Next we looked for a welcoming church who would love & accept our family. We wanted it led by strong Christians who lived for the Lord in all they did.
We have been so blessed in our little country church (about 50 regular attendees). They love our family & the children even have adopted grandparents who they often sit with & who attend each of their birthday celebrations etc. Our church is full of people who take a real interest in us & support us in our home schooling, even though they don't all understand why we choose to. They encourage us in various ministry areas without forcing us into them. They are an extension of our family & we know we could call on anyone for help & they would be here in an instant.
Anyway we are so thankful to God for this wonderful group of people!
Certainly no church is perfect, but it is important to seek the Lord's guidance in where is the right one for your family to attend!

Sorry long comment

Rob said...

Hi Kimmie, The answer is simple for me, I just expect people to practice what they preach, or at least practice what they learn in church.

Imagine That said...

We are considering moving churches due to our boys disabilities and the building is two stories with no elevator. We are praying for guidance. We would love a church close to home but living in the country and having a larger handicapped accessible church are not working together. We pray for a church that can become our family, a church that is True to Scripture in the way they make decisions and a church that makes disciples not just converts. We pray for a church with a heart for the poor, orphan and the widow. A church to challenge us without pressure and guilt. Please pray for God's leading in our decision, if we should stay or move. Thank you and God bless. Stacy

Leslie said...

We're currently thinking about changing churches as well. We just closed on our house at the beginning of December, and our church home is now a 45-50 minute drive each way for us. We do have a sister church that's about 5 minutes from our new home though, so we'll try that one first.

As for what I want/need in a church.
1) They absolutely MUST preach the whole Gospel. No leaving out the Spirit, and no watering it down.
2) They have to be welcoming. I can't spending a Sunday in a new church and never once being welcomed and made to feel at home by anyone. (we're military, so we've had our fair share of moves and new churches, and it's sad the number of times that's happened)
3) I actually prefer my children to be with me during the service (I've yet to see a Biblical example for keeping adults and children separate for worship and teaching), so I look for a church that doesn't push children away to little classrooms to color and play, instead of welcoming families to worship and learn together.
4)I don't want "Sunday friends", I want a church family. So there needs to be ways to help the church family connect in ways other than just on Sunday.

cathy said...

new to your blog and couldn't resist jumping in. i desire diversity. racial, socio-economic, political, and educational diversity. i don't want to be in a place where everyone looks/acts/ thinks like me. let's mix it up a little. we're very fortunate to belong to a church that is very racially diverse, and it is a good reflection of what our own family looks like.

Renee said...

Ahh.. a perfect church would not let me near it with a ten foot pole. :o)

We believe a church should
-preach the Word, boldly.
-Reach out to the lost.
-Care for the poor.
-Disciple the Saints.

Expat Mom said...

If I were to ever consider a church again, it would have to be one where the people were NOT judgmental and non-hypocritical. I believe in God, I don't believe in religion, but I think most churches are based on religion, rather than God.

When I was very small, my parents were hippies and we moved to a new town. We went to a church that had been Mennonite, but changed to non-denominational. When we went in, a man shook my father's hand and said, "We received word that the the first of the unlovelies would be coming soon!" My dad had to laugh so hard at that because these were people who modestly covered their heads and were so very well dressed and my father had loooong hair and blue jeans, as did the rest of us! That church accepted us no problem and we were very happy there, but since then, I've never found another that seemed open at all.

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