Most people that would bother reading this blog know that I’ve been having a hard time finding a decent church here.
I had been going to one for a while that I thought would work out, but it became apparent that there was a congenital lack of compassion in (at least) the pastor, especially towards non-Christians, and a person who doesn’t show compassion is not right with God (“they will know we are Christians by our love”). That, along with some other very bizarre behavior, caused me to stop going there.
I’ve been searching for a local church ever since, but those around here tend to fall in to one of three categories:
- Compromising – the congregation no longer hold to Biblical standards, doesn’t believe the Bible is inspired, have decided that God changes to suit ‘the times’, or just plain don’t have the guts to get rid of a pastor that falls in to one of those categories.
- Legalistic (and not in a good way) – I will *never* understand people who think one hole in each ear is proper for a woman, while a hole anywhere else is evil. It’s fine to have standards, but arbitrary and self-contradictory standards bug the crap out of me.
- Dead – their doctrine might be fine, but the Spirit is not present.
But I think I might have finally found a new church, and as a bonus, it’s just a few minutes from here. I noticed the building for the first time the other day, and asked some local people trying to find out service times (apparently I was too blind to see them ON THE SIGN lol).
After talking to one lady, she passed the word to someone and I actually got a call back from a deacon of the church. After over a year of dealing with not-so-friendly and not-very-helpful people in the churches around here, I was surprised he even called me. More surprisingly, he was very friendly, offered a lot of information up front, and welcomed more questions. When he didn’t know the answer to a question, he admitted it and referred me to the pastor.
Unfortunately their service times are going to be hard for me – they only have Sunday morning and Wednesday Evening services — I have a hard time with mornings, and a family dinner I attend every other Wednesday. So I had to wait a week to go, but I went tonight, and left content. I think I’ve finally found a local church.
Now, time will tell of course, sometimes you don’t notice crazy until you’ve been around for a while (and this was a Wednesday night service, so a lot of regulars weren’t there), but by all appearances this church looks great.
- They gave me a copy of their belief statement right up front (and it’s all spot-on).
- They’ve answered every question I’ve had so far, satisfactorily.
- The pastor is very obviously Spirit-filled (YAY), well-educated, well-spoken, and not even slightly annoying.
- No one at the church attacked me and invaded my personal space (hugs from complete strangers are not cool, especially when you jump over being touched by good friends)!!!
- They saw that I was hanging back in the service — were concerned enough to check on me — but then had the good sense to leave me alone.
- Pretty much everyone came across as friendly, but not saccharin.
- They’re outreach oriented, without compromising standards.
Hopefully this means that that next time I have company I’ll be able to take them to a church that doesn’t freak them out (Lindsey, lol)