Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Church Attendance Where You Can Belong

Father Son and Holy Ghost
courtesy photobucket
 
 
My blogger friend Sharon wrote a post “Almost Missed Church on Purpose” that inspired this post from me.  I do understand the hesitance of some people to stay home and not attend a church.
 
Several years ago, Robert and I watched early morning church on the TV instead of attending a local service. 
 
The reason was, we had just left a church due to pressure from the Pastor to teach something we did not believe in. 
 
Then our friends came to live in our town and I agreed to visit churches with her so she might find one she liked.  She did find one, but God seemed to tell me, "No not here for you." (It was just a forbidding feeling.) 
 
Sometime later my friend was attending a craft fair in town and spoke with a lady who informed her that she and her husband wanted to start a new church here in our town.  “Oh you must call Hazel and she will help you.”  My friend has always been helpful that way!!
 
I did agree to help them, and our first service was 9 people; them, me, four people they brought with them, and another couple who showed up from the Newspaper notice. 
 
The next week in filtered more and soon we were able to move to a building we could rent full time.  For several years I assisted where I could and sometimes preached when they needed to take a Sunday off. 
  
Then for health reasons they moved away to be closer to their daughter, and placed the church into the hands of a novice preacher.
 
Again I helped, but began to realize the new man was not wise or trustworthy with money.  His needs and the church rent were two different topics.  Pastor and I had a disagreement over this and he asked me to leave which I did.
 
A few weeks later the church was locked out of the building for non-payment of rent and their sound system, pulpit, chairs and teaching materials were confiscated and held by the owners of the building, resulting in the church closing.
 
 Now I was in need of a church so I scanned the newspaper to find a group with a short service and a fellowship time.  One church appealed to me even though it was a traditional church and unlike any church I had ever attended. 
 
 
They lit candles, sang hymns I had never heard, and celebrated Advent, Lent and other traditions.  The preaching was Bible based and uplifting; although the congregation was mostly seniors and there were few if any children and young people.

I was welcomed with open arms, and enjoyed the short service.  I still had time to pick up milk or what we needed and get home by noon. 
 

The minister allowed me to share a short 5 minute story once or twice a month during the Joy portion of the service, and most of the people seemed to look forward to my stories. 

About that time, my daughter suggested that I start a blog and document my stories, which later became my three books.
 
 
Robert is not able at this stage of life to be in crowds so I give him permission to stay home, and he gives me permission to go to church alone. 
 
 
Next Sunday our Pastor is taking a short vacation, and when I heard who was to be the guest speaker, I made a decision.  Not to leave my church, but to take a vacation too.
 
There is a new live church in town, and this will be a good time for me to visit. 
 

6 comments:

  1. We all have so many stories about churches...some good, some not so good, some funny, some not so funny. All make up the Body of Christ and point to HIS unending grace.

    Blessings to you.

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  2. It sounds like you found a good church match for you. I have found one that I love too, and that is such a joy.

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  3. I've yet to find a perfect person in church, but may we continue to strive in it to bring honor to our Father and the Good News to the lost. We are the church...

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  4. Presently, we found a great church, but I can relate. Oh, this was amusing. Love your writing! (Why am I feeling so free right now???)

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  5. There is really no perfect church. Only perfect God. Here, we are only few, but God is using everyone to share God's goodness wherever it is possible:) we are not perfect too.
    Hope you find the right one.

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  6. I agree with Joy: There is no perfect church here on earth. I love to read what you write. I think: we all are imperfect but God will use imperfect people and an imperfect church.

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