It’s the last Sunday of 2014. And my Christmas shopping is not quite over. There is one really important item still on my list to find: a new church community. Our move this year to New York has been an adventure and brought lots of changes. But one thing has not changed is my need for a faith community. Finding a new church takes time. It can be frustrating since I can only go looking once a week. There are lots of choices in Westchester County. I have visited five different churches in the last few weeks.
Churches say all are welcome so I am taking the opportunity to go to different denominations. This will take even longer to find a place of worship, but I am going into houses of worship I might not otherwise visit. And seeing everyone out and praising the Lord on a Sunday morning is very comforting. I also get to hear lots of different styles of music and preaching. Funny thing, every Sunday I leave with a nugget of truth I can keep for the week. God finds ways to talk to me and give me his words of comfort and teaching wherever I choose to worship on Sunday morning. The search continues because I am not just looking for a place to worship God I am looking for a faith community I can connect with here.
I have not searched for a new church in nearly 20 years. And I didn’t realize how much I took my old church for granted. I knew the rhythms of our congregation. I was active in the community. I was comfortable with our style of worship. Though it’s hard to keep searching for a new place to belong, there are good things about being set adrift. I find I really listen as I participate in each new service. I am not “phoning it in”. Every church gives me a chance to find the holy in that place. I am mindful of what I am doing.
2014 brought many changes to my life but one thing is constant: the need for God to be in my life and me to be in a faith community. Finding my new church home is as important as finding the home where I eat, sleep and live every day. I will keep looking and know that God is the search with me.
How about you? How did you find your faith community?
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