Monday, June 23, 2008

Shopping Around

Church shopping.

Ever heard that phrase? I know some people who would slap the offender for blasphemy if they heard those words come out of someones mouth. Churches are NOT to be "shopped" for. You aren't going to buy a pair of shoes, or new jeans. You are talking about the House of God, and should do so with reverence and awe.

While I do agree with treating the subject with a little more respect, I also agree with the idea behind the phrase.

My husband and I have been church "hunting." (Better? No? I'll work on a new phrase.) We had an excellent church in Maumelle, Arkansas (waving to all my friends!!!), and it truly became our church home. We laughed, loved, and lost together as a family. We were involved in almost every single ministry (nursery, children's, youth, women's, men's, couples, missions), you name it, we probably helped out. So to find a place and a group of people to connect with again is a difficult task.

Yesterday we tried a church our neighbors recommended. And I have to say, I really liked it. Between my husband and I, we've tried every type of church you can imagine. Big, little, country, city, mega, average, denominational, non-denominational, from one end of the spectrum to the other. We've found so far we like contemporary worship music (think guitars, drums, bass, keyboards) and this church had that for sure.

The style of the building was modern industrial, and coffee heaven for my husband. And the Kids! Let's just say I could have stayed right there and played forever! The twins didn't want to leave, and even the baby (who sometimes gets fussy around strangers) played quietly in the nursery.

The only thing I had a problem with was the sermon/message portion. It was a live satellite feed from a church in Texas. Nothing wrong with Texas, nothing wrong with their pastor, nothing wrong with the message itself. But I just have this thing about hearing my sermon from a person physically in front of me if I'm in a church building. And please don't misunderstand, I'm not saying there is anything WRONG with this type of service. It's just not what I prefer.

We were told that yes, there is a regular pastor who does sermons/messages, but we're not sure when those services are yet. We might have to hear a regular sermon before we decide if this is the right place for us.

And I think it is VERY important to find a church you like, and to become an intricate part of that community. There could be debates about the validity of my statement, but for me and my family, I've found having a church home is critical. The saying, "You never know what you've got until it's gone" is true in this case. We can never replace what we lost in Arkansas, but we can move on to something just as important, but in a different way.

I'll keep you posted on how the church exploration (is that a better word?) goes.

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