Finding The Right Church

Discussion in 'Faith & Religion' started by Cody Fousnaugh, Feb 27, 2017.

  1. Cody Fousnaugh

    Cody Fousnaugh Very Well-Known Member
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    A little history of us:
    My wife was involved in her church years before she met me. As for myself, my step-mom had my step-dad and me in church almost every Sunday during my high school years. Only Sunday's we'd miss is when we were visiting her sister's in Michigan. After I went into the Navy, I was away from church for the 30 years, until I met my wife. Oh on the two 2-months trips I made to some Rocky Mountain and Plains States, trying to relocate out of So. California, I said a prayer each time I left my motel room to drive some more miles. The Lord kept me safe during those times, but other than that, it was definitely my wife that brought me back to God.

    The churches we've been to, since we've been married, have been somewhat on the "click" side that just isn't part of us. But, at least we did find a church to go to while living in both Colorado and North Carolina. Living here in northeastern Florida, to say the least, it's been a challenge. We've been to a number of churches since moving here in 2009, but none of them really "clicked" with us. Mostly rich, "clickish" type older and younger folks. We'd really like to go to a nice "down-to-earth" church, like we found in Colorado.

    My wife now watches John Hagee on the computer on Sunday AM. It's pretty obvious that this Pastor isn't for everyone to listen to/watch. He can be very opinionated about different things, but we both listen to him. I also like watching Joyce Meyer on tv sometimes. I like the way she mixes religion with psychology.

    So, my question is, just how do people "find the right church"?
     
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  2. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    I went to a few in Fresno when I moved here just for the social aspect but none of them got a second visit. I did go to one a few times with my ex but I wasn't fond of it.... constantly singing words from a huge screen.
     
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  3. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    I can speak to the subject, although I don't know that any of it will be particularly helpful. Had I remained in my home town, I would have probably stayed in the same church that I grew up in, although my theology would have probably changed somewhat. Perhaps that isn't the case because my oldest brother helped to found another church in the same town, although my next oldest brother remained in our original church. I don't know. I'm kind of a traditional guy, so I would have probably stayed where I was comfortable.

    Having moved to California, that seemed like a good opportunity to seek a church that more closely matched up with what seemed right, according to my own Bible study. As pretty much every denomination can be found within driving distance of Buena Park, Cypress, Long Beach and Anaheim, which is where I lived while I was in Southern California, I tried a few different ones, including even the Jehovah's Witnesses for a time, although I never became a member.

    I ended up in a Grace Brethren Church, and still identify myself as Anabaptist, although I haven't lived near enough to attend an Anabaptist church since 1983. However, I have found that I can feel comfortable wherever there is good teaching and a focus on putting God in control, although I don't necessarily agree with everything that is taught. I have attended Churches of Christ (non-instrumental and instrumental), Southern Baptist, American Baptist, and a couple of non-denominational churches. I am currently attending a very small non-denominational church that seems to have some Adventist in it, although the pastor comes from a Baptist background.

    One of the greatest advantages in attending a church is Christian fellowship, accountability, and teaching and, since true learning doesn't necessarily require believing everything you are taught, it doesn't bother me to hear something from the pulpit that I'm not sure about as long as it's not deliberately deceptive or so far off as to be distracting.
     
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  4. Missy Lee

    Missy Lee Well-Known Member
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    I attended a Presbyterian church as a child and teen and then left the church. When hubby and I decided to go back to the church I went along with his choice of Lutheran, the faith he was brought up in.

    I was a card carrying member for years, volunteered in the food bank but all the time seeing the nasty behind the scenes stuff and knowing it was not for me. Things came to a head when our pastor would not step in to stop the thievery going on with these Christians??? taking home donated food to stock their own pantry.

    There were several other instances causing me to make the ultimate decision to leave and talk to God in the privacy of my own home.
     
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  5. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    Yeah, if you're in the wrong church, being on the inside can be disheartening. I learned that during my one stint as a youth minister, when I learned that the real goals weren't what I thought they were. That's not true of all churches though.
     
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  6. Cody Fousnaugh

    Cody Fousnaugh Very Well-Known Member
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    Well, the last church we attended, and still do for Christmas Eve Service only, put Budget Report/Bulletins on each pew for everyone to see. We were absolutely shocked at what the budget was for the Clergy. The Lead/Senior Pastor was making close to 1 million a year and he was in his mid 40's. A member of the church, a lady in her later 70's, lived close to our apartment complex. We just happen to be driving down her street for something and seen her outside, so we pulled in and spoke with her. She seen the last upcoming Budget Report, and reading that the church was requesting even higher tithing, she attended a Church Member Meeting about it. She totally disagreed with how much the church was paying the Clergy and asking for more even more tithing. She told us, "I told them, enough is enough, but they wouldn't listen and kept the budget the same. I was very unhappy, but continued going and tithing my usual amount."

    After that, while attending a Sunday AM Bible Study, the teacher mentioned how some Seniors were complaining at how loud the music was from the Praise Band. The teacher told us that there really wasn't anything that could be done about the loudness since the church was basically being run by young folks. This Bible Study was being held the same time the church service was. We could actually hear some of the music thru the walls, not real loud, but could hear it.
     
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  7. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    In the Grace Brethren Church, that I was a member of, the pastor worked as a plumber and was paid by the church only when we had projects going on that took him away from his business. In the church that I am attending now, the pastor receives no salary, other than a portion of the offering on Sunday, and since there are only a few families in the church, I don't think he's getting rich. He also built the church building, literally, with his own hands. Other than a large mega church that my wife and I attended for a couple of years in Texas, I've never attended a church where the church staff was paid high salaries, and I don't know what the salaries were there.
     
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  8. Cody Fousnaugh

    Cody Fousnaugh Very Well-Known Member
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    We are sort of stuck, because we like the modern church service, which means Big Screen showing hymn song words and Praise Band, but also like the tradition church service that still sings hymns out of a book, no Big Screen and no Praise Band. That was the kind of church we went to in Colorado, down the street from where our house was. Now that church is all built up and not "traditional" anymore.
     
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  9. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    It's funny but that huge screen with words that were sung is what irritated me the most. I like tradional hymns that are real songs not just a bunch of words put to whatever music and sung.

    It grated on my nerves...I guess if I'm going to sing songs, I want them to be songs...guess I'm more of a trational type when it comes to music in church.
     
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  10. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    I much prefer the traditional songs. There is some new stuff that is of good quality but most new Christian music seems to be only vaguely Christian. If you switched "God," or "Lord," or whatever they may have used for a woman's name, or a man's name, they'd be love songs. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with that, necessarily, but it's not the same thing. A song or two from the choir is fine but the trend in churches these days is for the congregation to be an audience rather than participants, while the high-paid professionals run the show. That's fine if I'm going to a concert but that's not what I'm looking for in a worship service.
     
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  11. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    Now days, to find a Church home you have to go shopping for the one that fits you. I don't like that it has come to this but in my opinion this is how it is in today's world. If you know what you are looking for you will just have to keep "visiting" churches until you find the one that fits you best. And even if you can find that one, there will still be things that you might not like or agree with all the way.

    It used to be that Church was where you went to worship God, pray, be taught God's Word, and hear the Good News Gospel that Jesus Christ is the way to salvation and eternal life. But now days many churches do not speak of sin or our need for a Savior, very little is taught from God's Word the Bible, and instead of a house of worship and prayer...they are social clubs and entertainment centers.
     
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  12. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Except Catholic Churches....there's never any fun in them. Even though that's my religion I avoid Catholic Churches ...to sit through a catholic mass is painful. :). On the knees for certain.
     
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  13. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    I have been to Catholic funerals. Up and down, up and down -- it's a wonder that any Catholics are overweight.

    I agree with what I think Babs is suggesting too. It used to be that people would submit to God and to the teachings of the church. Now we shop around looking, too often, for a church that will submit to us, and assume that God will go along with whatever we decide on.
     
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  14. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    There are actually "charismatic" catholic churches that I have been to in the past where the mass is a little more exciting and some livlier praise songs are sung. It's been years since I have been to one of these, they tend to be in smaller parishes and the Priest is usually what I call "on fire" for Jesus! :)
     
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    Last edited: Feb 28, 2017
  15. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    Unfortunately many churches that call themselves Christian, have become worldly churches instead who submit to the world instead of God. Their "Shepherds" have sold out to the world too and are teaching worldly wisdom instead of Godly.
     
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  16. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    The last times I've been in a Catholic Church were when my two grandsons in CA. were getting their first Holy Communion and being confirmed....so...a few years ago....and that church is on the boring side. Ive been there a few times at Easter also.
     
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  17. Cody Fousnaugh

    Cody Fousnaugh Very Well-Known Member
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    I remember one time, while living in Colorado, we decided to take our boat out on local lake on Sunday morning to do some trout fishing, instead of going to church. The next Sunday, some folks we had met while attending this church, asked us "where were you guys last Sunday?". I replied, "we decided to take our boat out and do some trout fishing". One lady looked at us and said "you know you aren't suppose to do that on Sunday morning. You are suppose to be here in church." We said "sorry" and walked away. For the rest of the time we attended that church, those folks never talked to us.
     
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  18. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    I understand what you are saying @Cody Fousnaugh I don't like it when people do that at Church either...I tend to think they are being legalistic and that turns me off. There is a difference when you know the other people really well and they might just be concerned that you were sick or something.
     
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  19. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    There's a delicate balance between being intrusive and giving the impression that someone wasn't even missed, and a lot of people don't do that well.
     
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