The past few months, I’ve thought about going back to church. I decided to put together a list of the things I miss about church and the things I do NOT miss about it.
Things I miss:
-Worship. I miss singing songs of praise and worship. I miss closing my eyes and feeling the presence of God in my heart, mind and soul through the music. I miss how the lyrics of God’s love for me would make me cry and how it felt as though those tears were cleansing my heart of hurt and pain.
I do NOT miss the one woman who just HAD to draw attention to herself by singing “harmony”, not realizing she couldn’t sing for shit and she was just ruining the beauty of the song. I do NOT miss the upbeat songs and how they encouraged “sister eva” to bust out the tambourine and start skipping down the isles, grabbing everyone in her path, starting a “let’s get jiggy with Jesus” train full of self proclaimed “jesus freaks” getting their “dance on” in the church isles. (And for the record, when Eva grabbed MY arm for ME to join “the train” I put my finger in her face, shook it back and forth and said “NO!”)
-Scriptures. I miss hearing the pastor read passages in the bible that speak of God’s love for me, of how he sent his son, Jesus, to die for my sins, so that I could have forgiveness and eternal life.
I do NOT miss hearing about hell and how I’ll burn there if I don’t obey the scriptures. I do NOT miss how, on occasion, the pastor would put HIS spin on the scripture and how I couldn’t stand up and call him out on it, and how I’d have to sit there quietly pissed off.
-I miss getting a cup of coffee and a cookie after the service and chatting with people about their week.
I do NOT miss getting a call from “sister Evelyn” telling me it was MY turn to serve coffee and then going on and on and on about how we all have a gift and a talent and we should use those gifts and talents for the Lord and how HER calling was that of serving coffee to her brothers and sister in Christ.
As you can see, this list went from deep and spiritual to childish and bitter in less than 30 seconds. I guess it’s like this. I want to go back to church because I miss the connection I feel with God when I’m there, but, for the most part, I can’t stand the PEOPLE who go there, so I am letting “people” keep me from feeling close to God again.
And that is kind of dumb.


  1. jen

    You know, I don’t think it is dumb. I feel exactly the same way.
    I go to Mass, and then I leave. I skip the coffee and the cookies. I can do that with my friends.

  2. Lujza

    I go to a church that is so dang big, that I don’t know anyone and they don’t know me.
    I soo totally hear what you’re saying though.

  3. Melissa

    I for one hate churches, because of the hypocracy they spew, and their own twists, turns and rules they put in place! BAH! I also can’t stand for anyone else to tell me how I SHOULD live my life! I know how to read, and don’t need no preacher man to read to me and tell me nuttin! LOL

    BUT, I am just as much of a ‘good’ Christian as those who go to church, probably more so! Just from knowing how my baby sis’s church is – yea, it’s one of them ‘Holy Roller’ churches *rolls eyes* who actually have this thing that THEY are the, ‘one and only’ church that is ‘right’ *rolls eyes again*. I am truely amazed at just how much MORE faith I have in God and Jesus than they do! How much more HONEST I am than they are too! (that hypocracy thing)

    Altho I’m sure my sis thinks ‘I’m gone to Hell for SURE’ since I live in ‘SIN’ with my man, and I smoke, drink and cuss too!!! *bad … BAD me!* LOL

    But honestly, you don’t need a church to make you feel close to God and Jesus, they are with you always, and talk to you always, if you’ll just stop for a second and listen! You can talk to them at anytime too, and they’ll listen! Don’t need a church for that either! *wink*

    Just crack open your Bible and read it! That’s what I do … I let it open where it may and read from there! As for the songs, who says you can’t sing them at home? To or with your family even! Sing’em to Gabby!! I’m SURE she’ll smile that wonderful smile at you and you’ll for sure get ‘that’ feeling and then some!

    That feeling you get has nothing to do with the other people, it’s has to do with YOUR relationship with God and Jesus! 🙂 You can have that feeling at home too, if you’ll just let it come 🙂

    So, crack open yer Bible and sing a glorious tune and feel the Love!!!


  4. Lisa

    Like Broad suggested, how about attending a different type of church? If you might be interested, try looking for Independent Fundamental Baptist Churches in your area. If you would like some help, let me know, and I can check with my Pastor to see if he knows of any in your area.
    I know all too well about the list of reasons not to go back to church… like you, people were the reason that I stayed away for a VERY long time… I finally started going back to church in 2003, and am thankful to be back in church…
    I wish you all the best…

  5. Mieke

    I second what Melissa says.
    But I also know the joy that belonging to a wonderful congregation can bring. I adore our synagogue. I love seeing the faces, listening to what the rabbi says, and talking to friends at the oneg. I’d look for another church if I were you. One that feels right – one that focuses on the good and not the judgement and manipulation of its congregants with fear.
    You’ll know it when you find it because it will feel like home.
    In the meantime Melissa’s advice is great – you don’t need any church to help you feel close to God or Jesus.
    Happy searching.

  6. Angel

    Not dumb at all, unfortunately I think its very common. I hate it when you haven’t been in a while and some idiot comes up to you and says, “Well well look who showed up, we better all be careful the church walls dont fall down”…like that makes me want to show up even more.
    Pray for them…pray for all the Jesus Freaks =)

  7. Hed

    I agree. You don’t need church to spend time with whatever deity you believe in. I meditate all the time. I don’t even know where the nearest temple is. And it’s all good.

  8. Trishie

    Come down here to old Kentuck and go to church with me…
    we do the things you like..they talk the truth…and we have MEALS after church! 🙂 wOO!
    Can you tell I’m baptist? we like to eat, jigga! 🙂

  9. QueenBee

    I am the EXACT same way… if it wasn’t for the people I would be at church every week. It’s surprising if I even go on holidays anymore…
    So now instead of the Southern Baptist gatherings I grew up in all of my life I practice the “prasin’-Jesus-in-my-pajamas-all-by-myself-each-Sunday” religeon. It’s working out okay…
    I still have the coffee and cookies after “worship”, too.

  10. danelle

    Amen Lujza. I attend church about once a month, and I do love my church. I love the pastor and I love the music. *But* – I’ve been going there for 6 months and it is RARE if anyone speaks to me. I think that sucks. Sometimes it is easier to worship at home. I feel like you don’t have to play in the band to enjoy the music and that God knows my heart.

  11. ramblingrose

    I guess you’d call me a Jesus Freak! or a “Holy Roller” (ya’ll ever actually seen someone rolling in church? never done it, but I’ve seen it”
    You’ve got to move your attention focus. If all you are looking at is people, you will see failures and hypocrisy everwhere, because all of us are flawed and we all are hypocrites sometimes about somethings. Just to be real about it, none of us are perfect. But guess what???
    God is perfect! He is SO PERFECT! so what you need to do, is set your attention on Him. Maybe that “sister eva” or whateverhernameis is as in need of compassion and love as you are? hmmm?
    I tell you WHAT sister, you just gotta use those skills and talents, and go be a MINISTER to those people in that church. Just walk right up to Sister Whathernameis and greet her the way you want to be greeted! This could be your ministry!!!
    (OK, kinda sarcastic…..) Still, you have to be realistic. There is no such thing as perfect people, but Jesus loved us all anyway. I’ve been a member at 9 churches (DH job moves us around) and some are better than others, but they all have stinkers. Best bet is to find an old lady and sit with her. Not only will she help with the kids, but people will think twice about climbing over her walker to get to you. Little old ladies are awesome for mommies with babies in church (I have 4, 6 and under). Anyway. for what it’s worth, I’m always happier when I go to church than when I don’t, and it seems to set my week up right.

  12. becky

    i miss the potlucks, the singing, and the feeling of belonging & commraderie & love. but i don’t miss the gossip & judgmentalism.
    but rose is dead-on right.
    y, i hear good things about calvary chapel. do you have one in your area that you can check out?

  13. myllissa

    You were so going to the wrong church. I go to a calvary chapel here in SC and I am the worship leader. No way do we do anything crazy or make you do anything you don’t want to. Oh, and you can wear jeans, with no shoes, and a holey t-shirt. Like my husband. Cuz he’s lazy like that, and they are OKAY WITH IT. Try it out. I know they have one in Modesto. I think that’s near where you are if I remember right…hey! I’m not a stalker, I just sent you a little gift when you were still preggers. Seems like such a long time ago!!

  14. Natalie

    I think it’s totally about finding the right church. I admire Rose (‘cos I think she’s right about the whole “kill ’em with kindness” personal ministry thing) but I don’t know if I have the strength of character to do it. I’ve test driven (ha!) a bunch of churches and still haven’t found a good fit. I don’t wanna go to one JUST to go to a church; I want it to be a fulfilling experience. I want a pastor who can MOVE me, rather than just reciting verse, you know? And beyond that, I need a place that’s open minded enough to not just dismiss me as a heretic Christian, too. So anyway, I hear ya sister. Let me know if you find a good place!

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