My husband and I have been searching for a church home for several months now. We are both new to the area and don't really know anybody who could recommend a church to us.
This process was a lot more difficult than I thought it would be. I figured if a church was bible teaching, it would be fine for us. But over and over again my husband and I ended up looking at each other halfway through a church service and shaking our heads: This isn't it.
We wanted a place with good, wholesome worship, genuine people who live by the word, the opportunity to meet other Christian couples in our age and stage in life, and great bible teaching we could bring home with us and apply to our lives. I grew up with a great pastor who was very intellectual and really gave the church a lot of "food for thought". I was looking for that same experience and was a little disheartened to find over and over again that I didn't get anything from the teaching. Either I ended up staring at the wall halfway through the service or I struggled to see where the pastor was trying to go.
We had attended around 10 churches in the area and it was getting to the point where we thought maybe we were being too picky. Maybe God was telling us to just settle down in a church and be content. I prayed for a long time for God to help us find a church, but I kept getting this disheartened feeling.
When we finally did find a church we thought acceptable, even though it had some things about it we didn't particularly care for, I just ignored that feeling in my gut that this wasn't the place for us. We got involved in a bible study and started attending regularly. But still, the feeling in my stomach was telling me this is not the place for us.
Finally we got the courage to try another place. We walked in and were surprised to find that we were the youngest people there BY FAR. As the pastor thundered the pulpit, I started to get nervous about the fragile health of some of the church attendees.
So we thought about it again, should we just settle with the one church we were already somewhat attending regularly? Should we just stop this search? I kept praying about it and actually did a google search of all the churches in the area. One church stood out to me, and we had not tried it yet. I asked my husband if we could try one more church, and if it wasn't right we would just stick with the one we had already found. He agreed.
We walked into this church last week and immediately felt like it was right. The music was wholesome and rich, the choir engaged the congregation without overpowering it, the warm welcome we got from those around us was very genuine. The pastor spoke with heart and knowledge from the bible and really gave us some food for thought. It was the greatest relief! I just knew this was the place God wanted us to be.
My husband and I went back this week and there was a luncheon for church fellowship after the service. We stayed and were able to meet lots of people and noticed the abundance of other couples our age. The friendliness of others there was incredible, and we left feeling so great and uplifted.
I am so happy that our search seems to finally be at an end. Thank God we found a great, warm place to grow and be a part of the body of Christ.