The title of the famous U2 song seemed so appropriate. The irony of course being that the folks who founded the church we’ve been attending probably started it up for the very same reason I now, sadly must go. The search for a new home congregation to worship with has begun.
What I’m going to say next is said purely out of love. I’m not calling them out or even mentioning the church by name, but if certain eyes ever fall upon these words, perhaps there will be a lesson taken to heart that can improve things with future members. As for my family, I think we fought the good fight where we’ve been attending for a few years now and out of a desire to not hurt the feelings of folks we genuinely care about, we tarried too long. I know stagnation when I see it and I know what it feels like to have my talents on offer be generally disregarded. I’m not angry or even upset about this. It’s just an observation. Either this organization has no use for my talents or they don’t believe I have anything to offer. Either could be the case, but when I see family after family serve a while and then leave, I begin to think that perhaps the reason we have been here as long as we have is that we were never used in any official capacity and thus never had any sort of falling out.
For some time now, I feel that the Lord has laid it on my heart to seek out a new home church. I’ve definitely learned some things and received many solid sermons where we are now and truly have nothing but love and respect for the people there. I thought this was the place for us, I really did. That said, I think the spirit and opportunity for a musical contribution was there and folks in control decided to pass on the opportunity, multiple times. If they feel that the Lord was telling them to wait, that’s between them and the Lord. I’m getting a different message and I need to go find my place, where my talents will be used to glorify God. If don’t seek out such an environment then I am in the wrong.
“You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? “So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. ” A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit.
Even the act of referencing that scripture ministers to me. I need to be about the business of the Lord. It needs to be on my mind. What I don’t need are hard feelings about someone asking me to help with music only to leave me out of any musical plans entirely. It’s the two sides of my psyche at odds. My angels and my demons at war! Yes, that’s RUSH. Sue me. I love their music.
So I got my feelings hurt. Big woop! I try to not be too reactionary to things like that. On the other hand if you never act to change things, you never move forward and you become like that oh so ugly word, “STAGNANT!”
Another issue with our current church home is nepotism, plain and simple. That’s a synonym for favoritism for those who didn’t know. I guess I could have just said, “favoritism,” but truthfully I always trying to sound as erudite as possible when posting on this site. It is after all branded with my name. In examining my feelings about this decision I did some reading online and found a fantastic article which I highly recommend.
10 Reasons Why People Leave Church
Now to be crystal clear here, I don’t think most of these apply to the church we’ve been attending but a few of them certainly do and at a high level. It’s good food for thought and meditation.
So on with the search for a new spiritual home. I’ve never been a fan of the mega church environment because it’s just too impersonal. On the flip side the small startup church is generally marred with control & leadership issues. It just goes hand in hand with starting anything from scratch. The mega church has lots of facilities and programs for teens, of which I have 1 still at home. I need to think about his spiritual development.
There has to be a happy medium somewhere. I don’t want to be in a church with thousands of members. On the other hand, unless God really lays it on my heart, I’m not interesting in a start up, having church in someone’s house, or a retail store or building or a theater etc. I know that the Bible teachers us that the location doesn’t matter, but from a personal angle, I want Liam to get used to the idea of going to an established church in a dedicated church building and see that as something normal.
I’ll close by saying that I know God will place us where he wants us to be.