Every believer goes through a time when they must decide on which church is right for their family. If they have children, it’s important to consider them in the decision. For me, there are three basic things to consider::
- Style of worship
- Genuine love
- Does the church teach in a way you can understand?
- Does it cover topics that are important to you?
- Is it biblically sound?
- Are questions and differing opinions encouraged and explored?
- Are there age-appropriate classes for your children?
- Do children’s classes incorporate active Bible learning as opposed to sit-and-listen learning?
- Do the teachers seem glad to be there and happy to teach your children?
Style of Worship
- Do you prefer contemporary or a more traditional worship service?
- What type of music do you prefer?
- Are you more comfortable in a quiet service or one where people speak out during the sermon or prayer?
- Do you like dancing, raising of hands, clapping during the singing?
This, to me, is one of the main things to evaluate. Jesus’ greatest commandments were to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength and that we love one another. So this is a biggie.
- Are the people warm and friendly?
- Do you feel a spirit of peace and unity within the congregation?
- Do the people enjoy visiting with each other and do they include newcomers in conversation?
- Is there joy among the congregation?
- Are children greeted and valued as well as adults?
- Do people seem authentic? Do they feel comfortable being themselves or must they always appear to have it all together?
Above all, pray about where God would have you go to church and follow what feels right. You may need to visit a church several times to get a good feel for it. When you find the right church for your family, commit to stick with it like you would any other important relationship unless serious problems arise that you cannot tolerate. God will bless you as you become involved with your new church family.
What are requirements for any church you regularly attend? What things would you consider deal breakers?