I’ve been thinking a lot lately about church. Now, my husband and I attend a church every Sunday, but we didn’t for several months. My parents don’t go to church for a variety of reasons, but mainly my dad’s work schedule which he isn’t in a position to change. And other people I know do go to church every single Sunday yet they live any way they want during the rest of the week.
The reason I bring this up is because many Christians are adamant that people have to go to church. “You need to be in church.” And they judge you if you don’t attend church regularly. But I think that Christians forget that we are the church, it isn’t a building. So, wherever I go is church. If you are born again, wherever you go is church.
I do believe that Christians need to meet together regularly with other Christians because it really helps us in life to share with other believers, to pray with one another, and to praise the Lord together. We can learn from one another and be helped by each other’s spiritual gifts. However, as important as I think going to church is, I don’t believe that not going to church means you aren’t a Christian or that you aren’t a good Christian.
First, you can learn from home in today’s world. I don’t need to go to church to hear good teaching, I can go on YouTube and find numerous preachers and teachers of the Word. Also, not every pastor who leads a church is always teaching the truth, which you would only know if you study the Bible yourself.
Second, it is more important for you to learn God’s Word on your own because just hearing it isn’t going to change you. If you just go to church but don’t study God’s Word yourself, you will be deceived and not able to discern the sheep from the wolves.
Third, unless you serve at the church, you probably aren’t socializing there anyway. My husband and I come into church, say hi to the greeters, and then leave when service is over without speaking to another person and most Christians do the same.
Honestly, I get far more from my small group then I do from going to “church” because I can actually connect with people in a small group. Also, I study God’s Word for myself and listen to a variety of preachers and teachers every day so nothing a pastor says is new to me.
Again, I’m not saying not to go to church or that it isn’t important. I’m saying that going to church doesn’t make you a Christian because Christians are the church, wherever we go. I honestly only go to church because it’s what people expect me to do, not because I feel God wants me to, and also because small groups are attached to churches. I learn more on my own then I do in church and, as I said, I connect with other believers through a small group, not in the church itself.
I just think that Christians need to realize that it isn’t church that’s important, it’s the fact that we are the church so we are representing God everywhere we go. If we leave the house in a bad mood and are rude to others, we are misrepresenting the church. When we hate people or judge them because of their sin or their personal choices, we are misrepresenting the church – because we are the church.
I say this because my husband and I will probably never be able to join a church as we will be moving from city to city for the next 20-30 years (Lord willing and by His will alone), which means we’ll be changing churches a lot and, in some of the countries we live in, we may not be able to find a church at all. But that’s okay, because we are the church so everywhere we go, we bring the church with us.
Summing up, if you can go to church, I recommend it especially if you are a new Christian or want to volunteer there. However, it is far more important that we study God’s Word for ourselves, connect with other believers in small group settings, and behave the way Christ teaches us to behave than it is to go to a “church.”
Let me know what you guys think in the comments below! I love you guys and pray God is doing miracles in your lives!