A little over a year ago, when I left my job at the church and walked away to find a new one, I also left my church. The church, that church, the old church? For 17 years, it had been my church and then it was not. Ron and I had taught more classes than I can remember – together and apart. We worked with discipleship, new members and of course, the library. The boys spent their teenage years there and were in countless programs, went to numerous camps as campers and then as counselors. They went on mission trips and made their first international trips with this church.
But the time had come to go. We had different jobs and Ron continued teaching Sunday School until the year ended. I didn’t go anywhere in that time period. It was in many ways a time of healing. A few people knew why I wasn’t there. I’d see other people out and about and they’d mention that they hadn’t seen me at church in a while. One of the problems in going to a really big church with multiple services across campuses. It’s not hard to lose track of someone. You change a service time, they change a campus. Contact is gone. I’m sure there are many people who don’t even know we are no longer there. I think it was Brian LePort who mentioned that he wanted to go to a church that wasn’t so big or that wasn’t so small. Well, that’s it.
When you work and worship at the same place, the sense of loss is great when that place and those people are no longer a part of your life.
Time passed and we began to visit – searching for where God would have us worship, a place to fellowship and serve. We had always gone to an SBC Baptist church, so that’s where we started and it just wasn’t clicking. It wasn’t that things didn’t seem perfectly wonderful at those churches, but there was just that mmmmmm can’t put your finger on it kind of feeling. It’s awkward not belonging, not having a regular place to go on Sunday – being at odds on a location. It’s like going out to dinner when no one is hungry for anything specific. Where do you want to go this week? We went to another church and another and then at Easter, we visited a Moravian Church. We saw an ad in the paper for a Great Saturday Sabbath service. We’ve been going there since without a second thought of going anywhere else. To say this has surprised me would be an understatement. To say that I have been surprised that Ron has felt the same way would be a greater understatement. The church we were in had a blended service and lots of opportunities for Amens and clapping with the sound of Bible pages flipping filling the air. This church is traditional, liturgical, smaller, quieter.
We met with the pastor today to talk about joining and getting more involved. We’ll meet again with another one of the pastors. I thought it would be hard to make a denominational change, but I didn’t know anything else.
I went back and tried to find the specific post by Brian over at Near Emmaus where he talked about the churches in which he’d been a member and found this one. I don’t know how I missed it, but there’s an interesting conversation going on, and it fits well with this post. I couldn’t find the one I was thinking about and mentioned earlier. Maybe I imagined it 😉