Choosing a Church: Episode 291

Choosing a Church: Episode 291

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Roundtable: It’s Time to Pick a Pew

People say young adults are leaving the church in droves. It's time to prove them wrong by picking a Gospel-centered church in your community and sticking with it. Our panelists share their journeys of doing just that, complete with ups, downs and hidden discoveries which convinced them that in the midst of a messy body of believers is exactly where they should be.

Culture: Church Shopping List

If we've got good Christian friends and an arsenal of online sermons, does it really matter if we're showing up to a church building each Sunday? Pastor Mark Dever, founder of 9Marks and pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist Church, says it's practically imperative. Not only that, he says not any old church will do. He tells us exactly what to look for in a church, how to know when to leave, and what we should expect to see and feel while we're there.

Inbox: The Singles Search

If you go to a good church but it's low on single young adults, should you be looking elsewhere? What if you're trying to get married, but you don't have a pool of eligible candidates? Candice Watters weighs in as no one else can.

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  • --"People say young adults are leaving the church in droves. It's time to prove them wrong by picking a Gospel-centered church in your community and sticking with it."

    ...

    Shouldn't we be picking a gospel-centered church in our community and sticking with it because that's the direction that Jesus gives us?

    Also, I'm starting to feel a little like a broken record, but if young adults are leaving the church in droves, then stubbornly sitting it out to prove people wrong isn't going to solve the *real* problem which is people leaving the church because they don't see enough of God there, it's just mending the fence ont the pasture and leaving the lost sheep to their own devices. Not to be trite, but bridges spread the gospel better than fences.

  • --I find one of the most important parts of finding a church is to check out what they do besides the usual Sunday morning service. Check out other opportunities to make friends and build a network. If they don't seem to care much about individual members, look for some other place. I know what it is like to be disconnected from the congregation every Sunday morning. If you feel invisible at church and can not make yourself heard, then it is time to find a new congregation. It took me a few months to find mine, and I can still only set a few names to faces in my social groups, but at least I am moving forward for a change. I am quite sure that things will get better if I keep nurturing friendships.

  • --I recently attended a congregation that was far too saccharine an experience. A sugar-coated Sunday morning where they try too hard to induce a "spiritual high" is definitely a red flag. (I think the congregation may have supported homosexuality, but I never confirmed that.)

  • It doesn't seem wrong to me that the guy wants to have a community of people his own age, including finding a wife. Of course, it is great to be around people of all ages. The young and the old. But couldn't he find a good church that had people his age, yet also provided the experience of being around those younger and older?  I am going through the same thing now. It is hard. Do you think that God could use trying other churches to get us to step outside our comfort zones?

  • --Also I hear about people in their churches doing things like BBQs, trips, etc (with people their age) or the fun activities my friends away at college do with their campus group. I know that is not the main focus at church. Church is more than just a social hangout.  But can't Christians want to have fun too?

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