I’m not a religious person; sinner is my middle name. Ok, it should be my last name too. I cuss, I drink, I sin. All the fun stuff, yup, count me in. I’m also looking for God.
I grew up Catholic. The first three Sacraments are already under my belt. Baptism, Receiving the Eucharist, and Confirmation. I’ve made a mess out of the fourth Sacrament, Marriage, so I probably won’t bore you with those details just yet.
Please, if you’re well versed in scripture, this post isn’t to offend but to give an idea of what my journey looks like.
Alright, back to me being a lost cause, ahem, soul. I went down the wrong path in life as soon as I could. Or at least that’s what is seems like. Knowing God took work. I was too lazy to make any effort to attend church or even read the bible.
I was too busy with kids, work, chores and having fun. Sunday was a day of rest all right, I slept in. How naive it is to think one can get through this world alone. This is exactly what I was doing because going to church was a drag. Or so I thought.
Fast forward a lot of years and not only was I confused but questioned the very existence of God. How could he allow a world so full of horror? The torture of the innocent is what I couldn’t seem to get past. Finally, I confessed my fears to my mother.
She gave me a different perspective about God and encouraged me to get back into a church. Find a community that I feel a connection with and all my questions will get answered. I needed something in my life, was church it?
Finding a Church
The Catholic Church has a few rules for divorcees of which I just didn’t want to deal with. Going there was not on my list of contenders anyway. Plus, it was located about an hour away. No matter how good my intentions are, an hour’s drive each way will ensure I stop going.
Another little church that I like was ruled out early on. The people were great. The Pastor was super nice. Because of the way the chapel was set up and the resulting acoustics, the sound system gave me a splitting headache every time I attended a service. Another one bites the dust.
We found a little Christian preschool for my toddler last year. It made perfect sense to attend the affiliated church. Everyone knew us by my 2-year old and we thought we’d finally found a place to attend. After several sermons, we knew we had not found the right church yet.
I then remembered a girlfriend of mine being excited about a small church she and her family started attending. They had the same religious background as we have and since they seemed so happy with their church, I decided to check it out for myself.
I was not disappointed.
The service spoke to me right away. Instead of being preached at, I felt ministered to. I really felt it was the start of something good when I was told that I had a future with Jesus. Really? It had never been put to me that way before, I wanted to know more.
As I told you right in the beginning of this post, I’m a big sinner. I don’t have the bible memorized and I don’t go on missions in third world countries. But I do want you to know I’m trying. If you’ve stuck around long enough to read this far, bear with me and read a little further.
It almost seems like this church was discovered by my friend just for us. Not sure how she found it, but I’m glad she did. I’m thankful that our family has hope with this new church. That I have hope. Hope that I can talk to my son about.
So, here’s my point to this whole long story.
If you are looking for a church to call home, ask your friends where they worship. Visit all the ones that sound interesting to you. In fact, attend several sermons so you can get the best feel for the way they deliver God’s message to you.
Is the pastor speaking at you or to you? Finger-pointing and promises of eternal damnation never appealed to me and I can’t imagine who is interested in sitting through a speech on why you’re going to the hot spot because you’ll never be good enough. I respond better to a positive message and empowerment through living right with the help of God.
You’ll know you’ve found the right place when you’re no longer interested in checking out other congregations. When you sit down and you feel comfortable enough to kick every other thought aside except talking to the Lord, you might have found your church.
This could seem sacreligious to some but I knew the new little church was the perfect fit for us because I had no desire to check the time. Didn’t care about the clock because I wanted to hear more of the message being delivered. This is a big deal because I’m a timeline weirdo. I’ve always got to know what time it is.
Because I don’t know everything there is to know about God, you might be wondering why in the world you should listen to me about church. Well, I will say this; I just witnessed to you and I’m pretty sure God helped me.
Have you helped someone find a church to call home?