But still, I can think of a few good reasons why not to attend church.
1. Don’t attend church if you’re looking for an exclusive club.
Don’t come to church if you’re looking for an exclusive club where everyone talks alike, looks alike, and dresses alike. Don’t come to church if you’re looking for a dominant culture or socio-economic status. Don’t come to church if you’re looking for an exclusive club that rejects anyone who doesn’t fit the profile. When you come to church, look in the eyes of someone who isn’t like you, who doesn’t look like you, and comes from a different walk of life.
2. Don’t attend church if you’re looking for easy answers.
Life happens. Life is complex. We wrestle with theology. The reality is, not a single Christian has all the answers – and especially not the easy or oversimplified answers.” Instead, when you come to church, be open to new things – challenging things. Be open to new ideas; come with an open heart and mind, and know that you may not walk away with all of life’s answers figured out.
3. Don’t attend church if you’re looking for a place to always and only be filled up, and never pour out.
If you’re coming to only consume, you’re going to be sorely disappointed. Don’t attend church if you’re looking for entertainment. When you gather together, you might get pastor who minces words now and then, or sometimes preaches a sermon that doesn’t move you like it did the week before. You might see worship leaders who may not always get the exact note. Some Sundays the music might be too loud, too quiet, too many hymns, or not enough hymns. Instead, come to church to bless someone else. Come to use your gifts of teaching, preaching, leading, encouraging, praying, admonishing, caring, and edifying. Come to bless, and while you’re at it, you too will be blessed.4. Don’t attend church if you don’t want to be stretched and pushed.
Don’t attend the worship gathering if you want to stay comfortable. When you come, you’re going to hear things that you don’t like. Don’t come if you’re hoping you’re going to agree with every single thing, or if you’re looking to maintain status quo. If you don’t want to be stretched or pushed, don’t come. The demands of discipleship are costly, and Christians tend to hold one another accountable. The Holy Spirit convicts us and makes us uncomfortable. Pastors preach about living the mission of God. The pushing, convicting, and piercing words of Jesus are often read out loud. Don’t come to church if you don’t want to be stretched or pushed.
While I could continue to give you plenty of reasons why not to attend church, I will tell you this, dear sister. To be propelled into our ultimate purpose, we must never give up meeting together. You need church more than you might realize.