Sunday, August 17, 2008

The church hop ends!

For the last 8 months we have been without a home church. From the time we got married, and through the births of all of our children, we attended the same church. Upon leaving in December, we began the "church hop." Some people seem to do this for life, just hopping around every few months, depending on the sanctuary temperature or the church solos. We, however, are very unaccustomed to doing the whole church-swap thing, and it's been rather trying.

The kids also began to drag each week, asking "where are we going today?" But last week we found what we were looking for...three very basic and necessary things: Care for the kids (safety and teaching,) Teaching from the BIBLE, and joyful worship by genuine people. Doesn't seem like those things would be too hard to come by, does it?

And, actually, the hardest thing to find is expository preaching. I guess some pastors have found that it can be easier or more "entertaining" to preach from the Reader's Digest jokes, or just pick a sweet feel-good thematic approach for each week. Yeah, that's nice. Those fluffy little things can be cutsie to read. Yeah, they give me warm fuzzies and sometimes make me think about.... whatever. But the Bible is what feeds. It's the Holy Spirit that empowers, and we can get that direct link through true worship, prayer, and God's Word. Why settle for anything less when we have the very best thing available?! :-) Anyway, I am overjoyed to have found a place that we all love.

It is over an hour round trip for us, but it's worth it. In fact, I think hubby has been working ovetime just so we can get to this church and back each week.

The service today was from Matthew 13. (from the BIBLE-- I still can't get over that, and I'm thrilled!!)

And, Tob, thank you. Thank you for leading us to such a wonderful place. You invited us months (maybe years?) ago, and you never gave up. We resisted for so long because of the drive. Also, habits are hard to break. It's like we were eating plain rice for years and had no idea that increcible fresh and flavorful food even existed...

12 comments:

October Dawn said...

In fact, I had commented to my Mom that the half hour drive for you would be a negative but she said it's really not uncommon. My brother drives a half hour to church too, and we drove just shy of that when we were growing up there in Wisconsin (new highways and higher speed limits have shortened that drive to about 15 minutes now).
I LOVE that we can see each other at church! Absolutely LOVE it! And I agree that the preaching from the Biblical text is very hard to find, but especially in combination with the honest to goodness family feel which I have NEVER experienced any where else in my 32 (almost) years.
.... honored to have you all = )

Just what are those Woods up to? said...

That is SO great! Yaaaay! It's so important to have a church you are fed by; ours has been a stable point in our sometimes-unstable lives, something we could and can count on every week to uplift us. I'm so glad you found a good one!

MemoryMaker said...

Glad you found a new church home. You have to go where you feel the Lord is leading and it looks like that is what you found. Just one question.. do they dance there? :)

Ann-Marie said...

We have always driven 20-30 minutes to church, too, so we hear you! I'm so happy for your family! The right church makes all the difference, and you can definitely tell when God is leading you to His body of beleivers. Great news!

Shirley said...

Oh, I know the pain of trying to find the right church ... multiplied by all of the members of the family. Yikes! When we first moved to AL, it was draining each week to try to find that right church. Some were downright scary - others were just mediocre. Some the kids hated, some we hated :)
Blessings!
Shirley

Sun-Kissed Savages said...

Tob,
...and we are honored to be going!

Jules, I'm so glad you have a good one!! Are you guys still leading SS?

MemoryMaker, Nope, no dancing. It's still baptist, after all, and you know how baptists feel about moving too much in church. I did see a hand raiser, though. The frozen chosen are livening up a little!! (And when I hold the baby in church, I have an excuse to sway with the music!)

Ann-Marie, yep, I think many people travel that far. We just got spoiled. And we do have four kids who make the ride with us. That makes a difference, let me tell you! ;-)

Shirley, it's challenging, isn't it? We visited some downright scary churches, too. One had me almost crying, in disbelief and confusion. And some were just total letdowns. Too many people just go through the motions.

One of Us said...

Glad you found a church home. I didn't know you had been church-hopping...otherwise, I would have invited you to visit our church. Even though you've found a church, we'd still love to have you visit us (we're only 30 minutes away too). :-)
~LJ

Rhinehart Land said...

Wendy, I am so glad you all found a church home. We as well, found that it was incredible that a church does preach from the bible. :) We are very happy with our new church family, the kids are excited, they tell us what they have learned EVERY week, they are safe, happy, and learning God's word. It's amazing and incredible. I am so so so happy you found this for your sweet family as well! Love you all!

Simply Stork said...

My husband and I are worship leaders at our church...it takes us about 40 min to get there and we are there alot...It is worth it to find a bible based church...

good for you :o)

great post!

~simply~

suzanne said...

oh, i so know! we didn't have a church home for about a year and a half - ugh! i hated it.

and our criteria were just as picky as yours - just exactly the same! how hard is it to actually teach from the Bible?!

we also drive about 30-40 minutes to church. but so worth it!

thrilled for y'all!

Anonymous said...

So, where are all these Bible teaching/preaching churches that everyone is mentioning? We are seeking one too, but are not looking forward to a commute. I would like to know what churches you all have found. It is so hard to find a place that fits everyone. WE have been in church limbo for a couple of years now and Satan has been enjoying our slacking off church. UGH.

Jen M said...

What a great post. I'm so glad you found the right church for your family.

Thanks for stopping by on my blog today.