What do I value in a church?
My experiences as a Christian are pretty recent, actually, they come from the last 5 years. When I was recently asked what I value in a church, my mouth opened to answer, and then it shut.
Hmmm. Interesting question.
I remembered when I first started thinking that maybe I should look at this religion thing again. I wanted a church where I could have anonymity and good music.
Yup, that's where I started.
Ironically, a sermon woke me up to face that this church stuff isn't about me, it's about pleasing God and I needed help on how the heck to do that.
After that, my picture broadened to what was important for my engagement, my progress. Since I have a background in management, I turned to what I always did at work - a checklist. On it were thinks like fairness for women, identifiable ways I could use my leadership skills, and cheerleader types to fire me up.
There were other stages in my "What do I value in a church?" progression. Here's what I value most nowadays:
I WANT TO BE AROUND PEOPLE WHO HAVE CHARACTER, THINGS LIKE INTEGRITY, AUTHENTICITY, AND A DEEP SENSE OF MISSION.
I WANT TO LOVE AND HELP THE WORLD, OR AT LEAST MY NEIGHBORHOOD, WELL.
I WANT TO BE AROUND PEOPLE WHO SHOW ME HOW TO TAKE JESUS' MESSAGE SERIOUSLY.