Looking For A Church Home?
When people drive by our building they may have some idea of who we are, but it would take a visit for them to really learn about us. In fact, they may need to visit for several weeks to carefully examine who we are and what we believe. Some who drive by our building these days are “looking for a church home.” We often receive a visitor’s card marked “I’m looking for a church home.” Some of them, however, even after our visits, calls and letters, end up somewhere else. As the retailers say, they “looked” but they did not “buy.”
The media are saying “religion” is on the rise. Many are looking for answers to the tough questions of life, and they know God has answers for those tough questions. “Baby-boomers” are looking. “Millennials” are searching. Disgruntled members of big denominations, unhappy with their politics and bureaucracy, are looking. Parents with young children are looking. Shopping around. Many are looking, but what do they expect to find? What are they looking for that they do not find here?
“You are not friendly enough.”
If you have ever been on the road and stopped for worship in an unfamiliar area, you may know what it means to be ignored. Are we unfriendly? Do we take time from our visiting with each other to greet and speak kindly to our visitors? Frankly, I have never known a more friendly and warm group of Christians than those who meet here. But it won’t hurt for us to keep on working on our “friendly.” It can always be better.
"Your doctrinal stance is too strict.”
Yes, some churches do teach doctrines that God did not authorize. Then there are others who teach that there are New Testament doctrines that we don’t really have to obey. If we ever do either of those things here at Cy-Fair we will need to correct it. But no one has given us any reason to believe that we do not teach and preach the Bible here. In fact, every class has an open Bible for its foundation! Maybe some are really looking for “feel good” preaching, not Bible preaching. The gospel is truly good news. It calls man to a life in which God’s love and grace give us the means by which we can have the hope of heaven. But the gospel also makes some demands on man that many do not want to obey. We will always be wise to “examine” ourselves and what we teach to make sure we preach God’s truth (I Timothy 4:16). But we also must remember that some do not want truth, that some have “itching ears,” seeking to satisfy themselves, not God (2 Timothy 4:3). We must not try to force God’s Will into a mold of our making, but to mold our will into God’s Will. He is the potter. We must be the clay.
“There are too many old people there.”
Now that’s hitting a bit closer to home these days, but there’s nothing wrong with being “old,” however you define it. True, in some places the pews are filled with mostly gray-haired folks, but not here at Cy-Fair. We have many young families who vitalize and motivate us to greater service. Young, old or in between, every soul is equally valuable in God’s sight.
“The worship and the sermons are boring.”
I know what “boring” means. Some preachers are more talented than others, and some sermons less “exciting” than others. But how can singing about the love of God be boring? What about hearing Scriptures which tell us of eternal life? And what are we supposed to do to keep sermons from being “boring”? More humor or entertainment? A side-splitting joke now and then? Okay, but some may prefer a lot less Bible and a lot more entertainment. Maybe some prefer a little more “Mayberry” or “Peanuts”, and a little less Ephesians and Luke. When does that levity and laxity become irreverent—even if it increases interest in what is being taught? David’s attitude toward worship was, “O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day,” (Psalm 119:97). That attitude keeps boredom with spiritual things at arms length, to be sure. That seems to be the answer to this problem.
The air conditioning (or heating) was not set to their liking. Or, the cushioned pews were too hard and uncomfortable. Maybe this one: “I saw hypocrites there!” Even, “the services last too long.”
Is it possible that some are just “shopping around” for a church that suits them, and are not concerned about what is pleasing to Christ? Could it be that our best efforts will never be enough for some, and especially so if we keep trying to be the church described in the Bible as the “bride” of Christ? Whom should we seek to please—man or God?
If we fall short in our greetings or welcome, let’s make that right. If our services need improvement, then make the corrections needed, no matter how painful they may be. If our interest in guests is not what it ought to be, let’s get our attitudes right. We must be willing to show genuine interest in our visitors, for how we deal with them may be the deciding factor in where they dwell eternally.
If you are looking for a “church home,” we are willing to take the Bible and study it with you, making sure that our views are in harmony with the Bible. We want to help you and others, but we will never compromise God’s message for any reason and certainly not to increase our attendance. We want everyone who loves God and His Word to join with us. We want to be of help to everyone genuinely interested in improving their spiritual lives.