Recently, I shared on Instagram that my husband and I left the church we never thought we’d leave and are searching for a new one. A gal who follows me requested I share about our church search in my newsletter. As I thought about it, I realized I don’t have much to say as of yet. The only words I can seem to find are, it’s hard. Like seriously, it’s really stinkin’ hard.
It’s hard to feel peace over leaving but not know where you’re going yet. It’s hard knowing people don’t understand and not being at liberty to provide explanations (We did not leave because of Covid disagreements, I’ll at least lay that potential rumor to rest here.). It’s hard and yet inevitable that assumptions will be made and even gossip could be spread as you make your exit. The hardest part? Leaving a family of believers you love and never ever thought you’d leave. But Jesus walks with us through the hard. And that’s the truth I’m clinging to.
We’re not the church hoppin’ kind, we’re the church hopin’ kind. Our hope when we joined our last church and when we join our next one is to be all in, serving and staying. It was a little over two months ago when my husband and I made the difficult decision to leave the church we’ve loved for many years (10 for me, longer for him). It was a decision we mulled over together for more than a year. We argued about it, prayed about it, cried about it, and finally landed on the same page, realizing it was what was best for our family. With that decision came a flood of emotions. But I see hope shining through the sadness and fear as we look toward the future.
Searching for a church is grueling. It’s hard to decipher sometimes if there are real concerns with a potential church or if I’m just a theological snob. I had an easier time deciding on a husband. It’ll leave you saying, “church search is the worst search!”
If you’re in the same boat may this reminder sink deep into your heart and give you peace: God goes before you. He is with you. He will never leave you. You can trust him.
It’s a simple truth but it’s what I need right now—simple, sturdy reminders that God is working even in this and that he is our Good Shepherd, leading us every step of the way.
We love the Church. We believe in the Church. We can’t wait to join the local body of believers God is leading us to, for his glory and our good.
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. Psalm 32:8 ESV