So let me backtrack some. The obvious premise of this blog is that I am a Christian who has grown up in an abusive church. It has beaten me up time and time again. Why do I keep going back? Because I still love God. And if I am to love God I am supposed to love His Church. (John 15:12)
One thing that has been a catalyst for me in the past few months is leaving the church I had become cocooned in for ten years and being forced to look around churches to find something for me. We moved eight hours away from home and if I wanted to create any kind of community here I would need a church. I began to ache for it in a way that I have never hungered for the Church. I went to one church here and I felt completely rejected. It felt as if I filled out a visitor sheet and someone behind the scene said, "no, we don't need her" and the church just kept going. About a month after I requested information and community a nice group did come visit, but it was at that point I had decided to continue on my journey.
And that next step is where I find myself now. I found my church home that next week. Logically I kept thinking I should maybe visit other churches or give myself more time, but within a week I knew - this was where God wanted me to be right now. And I would settle in and do whatever God gave me to do. And rock the stinking socks off it.
But even as a Christian it is terrifying to walk into a church where you know no one. And if no one even says hello, it feels like a rejection. How much more important would it be to be friendly to that visitor if you knew that her spiritual survival might hinge on if you show him or her Christ or give them the cold shoulder?