For the past couple months my husband and I have been looking for a new church home. It’s more lonely than I thought and I want to give up regularly.
For several years we have been going to a large non-denominational church in our city. It’s been a great church for us. We have made lasting friendships, served in the children’s ministry, grown closer to God, and best of all, have looked forward to going each week. So why leave? Truthfully, I’m not completely sure and most days I wonder if we should just stay.
In spite of this, both my husband and I hear God nudging us somewhere smaller, somewhere closer to home. And so we are trying to listen. But it’s hard.
It’s hard, in part, because each week is different. We catch week two of a 4-part sermon series. We register our kids in a different system, again, so we can pick them up. Sometimes we know the songs, sometimes we don’t. We attempt to make small talk.
I know this is a season. It won’t be like this forever. And yet I find myself seeking solid ground. I want to anchor my faith during a season that sometimes feels a bit like being out at sea.
As I thought about this, I began to wonder how others handle such times. There are many reasons we may be without a church home for a while. Reasons that are physical, emotional, and beyond. Knowing this, I decided to pose this question on Facebook. Here are some of the responses I received.
Stay in the Word. Try out a small group or Bible study. Invite women to coffee!
I’ve been there after military moves and it’s tough. I’d encourage you to make the church search process as brief as possible. It’s tempting to keep visiting and prolonging the decision. My husband and I realized we were falling into a consumerist mindset of shopping for the “perfect” church for our needs instead of being led by the Spirit, choosing a good (though imperfect) church quickly, and plugging in right away.
Find a good church is hard. We moved to a new state a couple months ago and have had weekend commitments making it hard to visit churches. A few things that have helped us are watching services online, staying connected to our old small groups, and staying in the Word.
Pray that God will lead you where He wants you; where you can grow, develop your spiritual gifts, and serve as you are fed and served. Life.Church offers a way to stay connected, and Bible-based, while you’re searching. Just as important to connect locally though, so don’t give up. You’re exactly where you need to be. And your home church is seeking you, too!
Have you experienced seasons without a church home? What would you add?