Yesterday I went to church. While church has some downfalls, and there are days when I don't feel like going, I do love church. Last night as I went to bed, I started thinking about some of the little things I like about church, and realized I had a list of those, so here they are today:
1. Singing - I love to sing, and I love most of the songs we sing at church: new praise songs, old hymns, and anything in between.
2. People - I love people. It may sound strange, but it's true. I love hearing their stories, and I love chatting with them about their experiences and about my own.
3. Coffee and snacks - Two things I really enjoy are coffee and food, so if I can have them at church too, how great is that?
4. Sunday School and Nursery Care for Kids - I love that my babies get taken care of in the nursery, and I love when my kids go out of church for Sunday School for 2 reasons: #1 There are great teachers and caregivers out there teaching them about the Bible and about our faith in God and singing songs with them, and #2 I get to sit in quiet serenity for a half hour or so, just taking it all in. :) PS This goes out as a huge thank you to the wonderful caregivers and Sunday School teachers out there. I appreciate what you do!
5. Bible teaching - I believe the Bible to be true, and it's God's instruction book to us. I once heard that we should always get something out of a message we hear at church. The times that I am not distracted at church, and that I am focused on the message, I do learn from the message. I also try to take notes during the message because I find that helps keep me really focused. Hey, I'm a teacher, and I know I make a terrible student! ;)
6. Worshiping God - It's the last thing on my list, but it's not little. It's the most important. I go to church to worship God. He has been with me every step of the way through the week, and when I go to church, he is there, and it's my chance to SING to Him, to meet more of God's PEOPLE to have coffee and snacks and conversations with them, to have my kids be at church too, to hear what the BIBLE has to say, and to WORSHIP GOD.
Blessings in the the coming week, and if you don't have a church, check out one near by to see how it is. Just a few of suggestions:
* If you know some people who go to church, ask them about their church. You can get a pretty good idea from their comments if they are positive about their church or not. Generally, positive people with positive comments have a positive church. So if a few people from the same church have great things to say about their church, go there!
* Give it more than one Sunday because just like us humans, church services can have an off-day too. If you're not sure about the one you tried, try another one because churches can have different personalities too, even when they're in the same town, or from the same denomination.
* Remember that church is where imperfect people go to meet a perfect God. If no one talks to you at any point, talk to someone. Church people are not always as friendly and outgoing as we like to think we are. :P However, many of us are willing to chat!
These are just my some of the little things I think about church! I'd love to know what little things you like about church. (PS I know churches have hurt people in different ways, and have caused people to never want to go back, but I also know that God can heal people and churches, and hopefully you can find a church, or even a small group of God's people where you can meet and experience God's grace and love.)