Decision #5 - The Difference A Church Makes
September 30, 2020
We’ve been looking at the supposition that a person only makes five to seven major decisions in his or her lifetime and then spends the rest of their life managing the ripple effects of those decisions. So far, we have discussed…
- View of God—Worldview
- Marriage—Will I marry? Choice of spouse
- Friends—The people you allow in your circle of influence
Choosing to attend a church, and which church that will be is another crucial decision. If you have chosen to be a Jesus-follower, you really should choose a church as well. It will improve your life and help you make better decisions when you are surrounded by God’s people. You will find people who encourage you and help you grow stronger in your faith.
In fact, whether you are a Jesus-follower or not, here are a few reasons choosing to have a church home is wise:
You can find solid, dependable, and wise friends for you and your children. The quality of loyalty and dependability is usually quite high.
You gain a network. When you have a church family, you are surrounded by people who have connections for jobs, resources, and who actually care about your needs. When you need help, they are there.
You have “call ahead seating” for big moments in your life. The moments of big life change like marriage and subsequent challenges, horrific sickness, disasters like fires, deaths in the family—you aren’t left to the whims of whomever you can find. You have a spiritual home where people care and actually know you.
You have a ROCK, and foundation upon which you can build as much as you wish. You and your children will greatly benefit if you always stay connected and growing, but even if you or your children depart from the path for a while, if you choose a good church, you will find to your amazement when you return from your wanderings that they are glad to see you and will help you get connected again.
Actually, as part of wonderful churches my entire life (I have been part of four incredible churches, and I have only changed churches because my family moved. I have served in two churches where God called me, the last 35 years at NewPointe), I could cover a few pages with reasons that choosing to be part of a good church is a decision that will make your life better.
But I want to talk to you for just a moment about the specific church you might choose to attend. There are a couple of things that will make that decision a better one.
First of all, make certain that the church is a solid, truth teaching Jesus-centered church. Some churches are known for their causes and issues. Those things are good, but their love for and allegiance to Jesus should be bigger than any issue.
Make sure they are open and welcoming and are known as people who will love ANYBODY. That’s how the Church is supposed to be known.
Find a church your kids love to attend, with adults who really want to know them. There will be a day when your kids will think there must be an adult who is smarter and cooler than their dad and mom. You want to make sure they are already surrounded with youth leaders and godly adult friends who will love and help them.
Find a church that is outward-focused, not consumer-focused. The church is intended by Jesus to be a service group, people who are loving and reaching the world as He came to do. If the church is just about meeting the needs of the members, it’s the wrong place. Once we become part of a church, we are to be part of His team that loves, reaches, and cares for the world. Meeting other’s needs is far more fulfilling than just getting yours met.
Choose a church that will help you find and develop your gifts. God has given every one of us as believers spiritual gifts meant to be used in bringing people to Him and helping them grow.
This mission will be the adventure of your life.
I could go on and on, but let’s just close with this: The decision to choose a good church is one of the best decisions you will make. As we like to say, it will make life better and make you better at life.