If you leave Church A because you’re feelings were hurt and you flee to Church B as a refugee of sorts, feeling victimized and angry, you’re just going to be disappointed when your feelings are inevitably hurt again by someone else. All churches are full of sinners. If you find a perfect church, don’t go. You’ll just mess it up.
If your feelings are hurt, work through the conflict with maturity and grace, giving the aggressor the benefit of the doubt. Your local church isn’t perfect because the people who make it up aren’t perfect. Do your part by loving others and turning the other cheek when you’ve been hurt.
3. You heard about a new church you might like better.
You’re 29 years old now, and you’ve been attending First Church of Townsville since you were in the first grade. You’re tired of the music, your feelings have been hurt and you’re just bored.
All of a sudden, CrossJourney Fellowship Collective is planted across town. You hear their music sounds like Mumford and Sons and their pastor has a rad beard and listens to NPR. Before you know it, you’re donning your favorite scarf and trying to make it to church in time to snag some fair-trade, single-origin, organic coffee before it’s time to sit down and listen.
Ok, that may have been a bit of an exaggeration, but you get my point. Unless you’ve got a legitimate reason to leave your church, which we’ll chat about on Friday, abandoning your church for a new church in town that everyone else is leaving their churches to attend isn’t wise or loving. Hip churches aren’t bad, and fair-trade coffee is for a good cause, but we shouldn’t be wooed away from our church family as a mistress is wooed away from hers.
If we’re thinking rightly about the body of Christ as it is gathered in the local church, it is not simply a building we attend to consume the experience.
We are not meant to consume the worship of Jesus; we are meant to contribute to it.
If we’re going to think rightly about our local churches, we have to know that leaving is a big deal. We don’t just leave when we’re bored like a mistress infatuated with another man.
Be a contributor, not a consumer. Ask yourself, “If I left my church today, would they feel it or would they care?” If the answer is “yes,” don’t get prideful, just keep doing what you’re doing. If the answer is “no,” meaning they wouldn’t even know you’re gone, closely examine your understanding of the church and what it means to be a follower of Christ and a member of the church.