Posted on November 1, 2013 37 Comments
Wow a very good point
Because they want an excuse and if it wasn’t that, it would be something else. 🙂 Just saying… We choose to make room for the things we really want in life. Take care! 😀
Quite simply, it destroys faith! My faith can no longer survive church. And it’s not because I don’t want to go, and it’s not because I don’t have faith or don’t love God. I think it’s obvious to anyone who reads my blog. But church has done more than anything else to kill everything I believe in. Now I have dedicated myself to calling it out in the hopes it doesn’t destroy all faith.
Hi Sacred, Thanks for sharing this. I am sorry for what you have gone through. I apologize on behalf of my colleague, fellow servants, who like I have committed many mistakes. I have also been hurt in the church greatly. I have been pastor and have hurt people. I have been church member and been hurt. I have tried to repent of my mistakes. I have tried to remain in the church despite all the discouragements I have received. One thing I can’t get past: Jesus left his church as his means of reaching and ministering. Many times, the church is a horrible reflection of Christ. I believe the answer is to change the church, not leave it. I say this for me, not for you. I am sharing how I feel, becaue you have shared how you feel. I am NOT scolding you or telling you what to do. Believe me, I totally sympathize with your pain. But I can only face and react to my own pain. If my life helps someone, then fine. If not, sorry.
Yes, yes and Yes!. Don’t worry you don’t put me on the defensive, by the way.
I take comfort in the fact that Christ did what I am doing. Walked away from church not to leave it, but to change it as well. I actually got the idea from Capitalism A love story. At the end, Michael Moore says ” I refuse to live in a country like this and I’m not leaving. I have said the same thing to myself about Christianity. While, I find myself unable to attend church at the present moment, I desperately want to get to a point where I can do so again. In the meantime, I have tried to create my own community here and refine my beliefs. It’s always been quite difficult to me to separate those who are supposed to manifest Christ and Christ. It’s high time for me to walk away from church awhile to define my faith outside of the church just me and my relationship with Christ. ( I grew up in Christian school).
As an aside, my husband and I were actually kicked out of our last church. When you don’t attend for a certain length of time they remove you from the membership. When my grandfather passed from cancer we spent the weekends out of town helping get affairs around. No one called, no one asked why we weren’t attending. And they refused to add us as members again without us standing before the church to give testimony before the church.
While that is by far the smallest thing that I have experienced, it was one of the more disheartening. If you’ve any interest I have posts on it.
Anyways, let’s change it.
God help us!
Often it is an excuse. It can also be a vague version of: People in church have hurt me, so I am avoiding it now…
Yes, let’s patch cracks.
That was a good job of showing the problem! Thanks!
My family and I have had our share of painful experiences at churches and I think the explanation is very simple.The Lord warned us about false teachers and false Christians.
If a “pastor” does not preach what the Bible teaches, he is not a man of God, and we are better off in another Church.
The Apostle Paul tells us what to do about false Christians in 1 Corinthians 5:11: “But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolator, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.”
The parable of the wheat and the tares (Matthew 13: 24-30) teaches us that Satan has introduced lost people into His church, and God has allowed both to grow together, until the day when He will separate His people from the unbelievers.
My family and I have not only survived, but thrived spiritually by listening to sermons on the web and studying the Bible daily (during those years we couldn’t find a single biblical Church). God’s Word is sufficient for helping us to stand firm in His will, no matter the circumstances.
Amen. My husband and I still watch and listen to sermons online. Just because people aren’t attending a church doesn’t mean they can’t grow spiritually. Someone once told me I was not being fed. My question was: being fed what? Sometimes in between churches it’s better to be fed less than to be fed poison.
fed up, I think.
Thanks for sharing!!!!!
Amazing and POWERFUL point!
The sad truth is that you will not be able to use this excuse when you face God.
@sacredstruggler and others in your position. Take heart!
I was late becoming a Christian at 40, having been an atheist in my youth and not bothered in between. At first I loved the church I went to. I assumed everyone had the same passion that I had and as a body we could change the world. I thought of Church as the weekly rallying call, to inspire us to all go out and be Christ in the world.
Later I realised that my church had a different passion to mine – there was nothing for my non-christian friends there, and so I began to try stuff myself, like a meeting on Sunday evenings in a local cafe. Unfortunately this clashed with the evening service and was called divisive. I realised that either i had to give up my passion and follow that of my local church, or leave.
People worried that i had lost my faith, but I later began to describe it as being a missionary in my own street.
I spent 3 years ‘allergic’ to church, and it was very fruitful. I grew in faith, I was far more active than I’d been allowed, I was able to question and explore my own understanding of God based on wide research and reading, and based on experience and discussions with non-Christians. It was a good thing!
I now sometimes attend a church, but with the objective of spending some focused time with God. It is a very different church, and it is happy to provide an environment to focus on Christ, to worship, rather than to rally the troops.
I have found many people have a similar experience, that they need to leave and spend a period in the wilderness. A time to dismantle and reassemble our faith, and grow in maturity and grace. A recent talk compared this to the transformation from caterpillar (who just eats what they are given) to a butterfly, through a chrysalis phase where everything is rearranged and made more beautiful inside the protective shell.
It can be a painful experience, but sometimes it needs pain to bring us to where we need to be.
This is a very helpful discussion! Thank you for providing perspective and constructive observations! May our churches, to which I attend one, be better landing pads for the myriads who come needy, thirsty of Christ. God, take away all of our toxicity.
The church is people. Good and bad. Just like the rest of the world. Why do we assume otherwise? Hypocrites abound everywhere. It’s just that WE expect something different from church goers. I’ve been hurt but I’ve been blessed in my church experience..I’ve taken my own “church vacation” on occasion while I sort out some issues.. Atttending church with a poor attitude certainly helps no one..People that hurt us are operating from their own hurt. We are almost always a part of our problem so let’s start taking some responsibility.
Also, if we don’t like our church, if we’ve been hurt through a particular church experience, why haven’t we switched churches? What keeps us there? Church loyalty (loyalty to a particular church on a particular corner) is nor more “spiritual” than loyalty to a certain bank. I, too, have moved on when it became necessary. I have no problems with that. Besides, God moved with me!.
Thanks Rebecca, for these very helpful points! You too take the cake!
Very good point and you are very right: hypocrites are not the focus.
Yes, like the team clash is the focus for the fans, so Christ is the focus for Christians!
Reblogged this on Random Stuff and commented:
Gotta say, this makes a good point….
Not sure you have read Jake Colsen’s So you don’t want to go to church?http://www.jakecolsen.com/contents.html
It pretty much described how I feel. My husband is very involved in our church. I have kind of tapered off because I hear all the inside workings and politics, have been hurt or seen others hurt and I agree… instead of moving to a new church where the same imperfect people (including me) will most likely be… change!!! But sometimes the task can seem so abstract and overwhelming and changing things sometimes feels like trying to get a building permit from the city just within the church! 😉
I went through something really big recently and no one knew about it… I haven’t been there for a while and no one has called. I have my small group friends and I am fine with that… but my point is… I am okay… I understand…I am in the fold so to speak. Our pastor and his wife are close friends… It is the bigger picture that I feel fails the guest that comes once or twice and gets lost between the cracks.
We used to have a store and it was not always easy for me to get out of there and always be on time… Once, years ago… when I ran in… unbeknownst to the woman whispering to the other woman… my daughter was sitting nearby and overheard her say…”Why does she even bother to show up?”
I GET that people are human and I still love my Lord… but it is disappointing when a well respected “Church Lady” is that kind of example to my child. Gossiping pretty malicously… I know it would be like cutting off my nose to spite my face (my mother’s old term) but it made me wonder…”Why do I even show up?”
I have been hurt by so many things. I guess Jesus included the Pharisees in his stories because they’re so many in the church today. What hurts so much is that my “friends” are more vicious than my “enemies.”
Sadly, You totally nailed it when you compared the Pharisees to certain church goers today.
For after all, what kind of examples are we to the unbelievers?
Wow! “Di” is what my wife uses too!
There is much to say on this subject: ultimately, why does God allow these things to happen in church? to me? to you? to anyone?
I love the discussion this post has engendered. It takes honesty to really relate to the One who is The Way, The Truth, and The Life.
I’m currently out of church for the time being. I’m very thankful that I left my previous church. It wasn’t easy. There were really good people there but the “strange fire” got to be too much for my family and I to continue on there in good conscience.
I’ve been attending a church that is not my own and been blessed there though. I don’t know if it’ll be permanent but I’m praying for direction and I’ll stay there until I receive it.
This is one of the hardest things to do, to know when God is changing you from church. My point is not that God can change you to another church (I myself heard Him tell me to go to the one I’m currently attending.). My point is people are now so flippant with dropping out altogether with the “spiritual not relgious” cliche. May God help you find a wonderful loving church without too much strange fire.
I’d prefer no strange fire, personally. 😉
Thank you and God bless!
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