How We Found a Church
BY DANA BYERS, BLOG WRITER EXTRAORDINAIRE
My family was blessed to be involved in a church in Oklahoma for nearly 14 years. During that time we served on various volunteer teams, helped launch a new out-of-state campus, and even represented the church while living overseas. Eventually I became an Associate Pastor on staff. But our family moved to Indiana for my husband's job a few months ago, and I wound up resigning from my ministry role due to not wanting to work remote. Thus began our family's search this past Spring to connect to a local church.
During the search, our family visited Grace Church. I drank coffee from a cup whose sleeve read “you are loved”. This was a powerful reminder to me that God loves me and He wants me plugged into a great church even more than I long to be. I’d been choking back tears of grief that we were no longer at our former church in Oklahoma. However, the coffee cup sleeve wording put me at ease and helped me be more hopeful.
That same morning we sang the words, “We are here for you” during the opening worship music. The lyrics struck a chord in my heart. God was getting my attention in many ways. It wasn’t just the coffee cup sleeve wording, the worship music, or the challenging and vision-filled message at church that morning. That morning I heard about an opportunity to serve that was right up my leadership-oriented alley. Our loving God was pursuing me and gently beckoning me to this new church.
On the drive home from church that morning, a simple yet profound thought occurred to me: No matter where we landed in church, we’d be worshipping the same God. He was fully capable of setting us in another great community if our focus remained on Him and not the details of what we felt our family needed.
So what did we do when we realized Grace Church was meant to be our new church home? It’s what I think anyone should do when they sense God moving in a direction: We got on board quickly. It was time to begin tithing at the new church, attending consistently, and serving. We’re learning about the church’s missions partners and becoming familiar with their staff. Our children joined small groups of kids their age and gender, and Chris and I are joining a small group.
Remember, no church is perfect because they’re all made up of imperfect people. You might have thought the church you used to attend was perfect, but it was likely that the deep love you developed for it over the years overshadowed imperfections. That same experience can happen at the new church if you’ll just give it time.
God will never abandon or misguide you. His plan for each of us is to be in community. I am so thankful He led us to find a wonderful new home at Grace Church.
Get to know Dana on: