I am struggling with going to church

Cindy - posted on 12/16/2008 ( 48 moms have responded )

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This summer something unfortunate happen at a church and I feel like there is no point going to church.l know the Bible says as Christians we need to be around fellow believers but I am so discouraged and I do not want to be around other Christians. I am blessed to have a wonderful husband but he has been battling back pain for several months and going through many back surgeries so it has become easy to not go to church and blame his back pain. I want my son to go to church and be blessed. He is two years old and I know that it is essential to take him to church. I need advice. Please pray for me and my family. My husband is having back surgery on the 30 th of December. Thank you for letting tell you my problem..

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Mary - posted on 01/07/2009

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My advice is off the beaten path. I'm daring to be religiously un-orthodox in my advice.



 



First of all...relax. We all go through periods of time in our lives and in our relationship with Christ in which things are "different" than the norm.



Yes, we should be in fellowship. Of course. That is a general command of scripture. However, there are times in our lives when being out of fellowship is something that might be a very healing situation.



Don't be religious about going.  Just give yourself permission to heal.



My husband has had many health and emotional issues (including back problems). He  has gone through several years of apathy about God and church. I am just coming out from this spiritual deep freeze I've been in for about 18 months. Yeah, I've rarely set foot in a church for the past year +.



However, God has been working...my heart is thawing out and so is that of my husband. We just went back to church for the first time in 2 years (I went by myself for over a year). He wants to get involved and be in church. An answer to the cry of my heart for sure.



You need to think about why you want to go. Are you feeling like God won't love you if you don't go? What good do you get from going if you are just warming the pew? I mean, really? Do you think you are scoring points with God by going and sitting there miserable, fearful, upset with others?



It sounds like you need time to heal. you have been hurt and are in a situation that going to church may not be helpful for a period of time. That doesn't make you less of a Christian or less holy. Throw off the guilt and just focus on Jesus.



I know your son will benefit from being in church. But remember...he is 2. He will not have much, if any, memory of going at this age. He will benefit by your prayers, your stories, your love, much more than an hour on Sunday mornings.



I am not diminishing the power of being in community with Christians and being a part of the local body of Christ. You should focus on being back there for sure. But taking a short period of time off can be a good thing. Keep in touch with other believers who can pray for you and listen to you while you work through your pain. When you feel ready start looking for another place.



It's funny...if someone comes out of a bad relationship we never tell people to jump right into another one. But when you have bad relationships with other christians, it's funny how we just guilt people into starting up new ones before they've healed from their pain.



Anyway, that's my take on it. Maybe it's not a popular view but it's worked for me.

Julie - posted on 12/16/2008

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Hello. I am a Pastor's wife and have had a lot of experience with church problems. No matter what happens at a church, even if the Pastor did something that wasn't right, you still need to be in church. When we see anyone do anything inappropriate that belongs to our church, we see it so that we can pray for that person. God wants us to be responsible for OUR actions and pray for everyone else. We should be planted in a church so we can grow in God and in our relationships. Just like a plant doesn't hop out of its pot, we are not to leave a church unless the Lord tells us to go. There is no condemnation in anything I am saying on encouragement. Please plant yourself in the church where you feel God wants you to go. The Lord is constantly testing us, so that we can see how we ourselves react and thereby learn what is in our hearts. Bless you.

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Kaitlyn - posted on 01/29/2009

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Cindy,

I so understand your pain! My husband and I have gone through a similar situation, and we have a two year old. We just recently started going back to church regularly within the last year or so.

Have hope - it gets better. Pray and get yourself involved in a good Bible study. BSF(bible Study Fellowship) and CBS(community bible study) are two good ones to start with.

Most importantly - I don't know what happened to you, but for me, I had to realize that we do not go to church for people. We go to church to worship God. We stopped going because we had been hurt by things that had happened in our church family. But your church family is compromised of sinful people! :-) My point is, everyone is going to sin at one point or another, be it you, your pastor, or someone else. None of us are perfect. When you start to go to church more to learn about God and start focusing less on the people there, it makes it a lot easier, or at least it did for me. Hope this helps!

Shelly - posted on 01/27/2009

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Cindy,



  I'm sorry you were hurt by something that has happened at your church but not going is not the answer GOD maybe trying to something in the church and what a shame it would be if you walk away for his plan.  Sweety you need to pray that the Lord will show you what is happening in this church and if it's not of God he will show you but what a shame it would be for you to walk away without knoing wnhat Gods plan is...and if it was something the pastor did just keepin mind just because he is on the other side of the pulpit does not make him any less of a sinner than you or I.  The title of pastor dose make them perfect...and thats why I love my church it's small right at the moment but growing and our pastor is the first one to let you know that he wears just as much flesh as we do and he has the same struggles as we do...Satan will give you every excuse he can to keep you from the Lord it sound like to me that he is using your husbands back to keep you from the GLORY of the LORD...I will being praying for your family as well as your church please don't let this keep you from paising the LORD 

Maximilion - posted on 01/14/2009

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Do you have a regular time of family devotion at home? The word of God does tell us to fail not to assemble ourselves but more important than religion is our relationship with our heavenly Father. God is not angry with you because you didn't go to church on Sunday but I 'm sure his misses his little girl singing to him and declaring her love and gratitude for the relationship you share with him. We are the church. You are the temple. What happens with your temple will be determined only by you. So while you wait for renewal remember God will not do for us what we can do for ourselves. He said if we don't have joy leap for it, in his presence is fullness of joy and his joy is our strentgh. I am a witness that God can restore the Joy of your salvation but not without us doing our part.

Tira - posted on 01/14/2009

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Hello to everyone! I just joined this community today because of the positivity and encouragement that Cindy has gotten from the responses. To be honest, the hurt comes from the church but we can't let that stop our PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP with GOD. There's a scripture in Romans 8:35-39 that states that "nothing shall separate us from the love of God" and it gives details by naming the things that shall not separate us from HIS love. Whatever you do please don't give up and just trust HIM. Stay prayerful and continue to be positive and tell GOD everything that concerns you and your family whether it's good or bad. Repent and just ask HIM to forgive you and your relationship will grow stronger with HIM. HE will even guide you to a church that will feed you the word of GOD and you will begin to feel the desire and hunger for that word. HE will alway's take care of you because you belong to HIM and HE is concerned about what YOUR concerned about. I will keep you my prayers and may the LORD continue to bless you and your family. Stay encouraged.....

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Hi Cindy: I'm wondering how you are doing and if any of us have helped you. The New Year is a time of renewal and change. I hope you and your family are well. Please give us an update if you get a chance :)

Rhonda - posted on 01/07/2009

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I went thru an unfortunate experience as well in my church. I went thru alot of childhood trauma and as a result of those traumas I went thru a depression. I had anger issues as well so to get to the root of the problem I started writing in a journal, praying and seeing a counsellor. I felt my fellow Christians didn't understand me, what I was going thru and so I withdrew and stopped attending church. I go now and then but I find when I do miss my Sunday isn't the same. I feel like I missed out on something and just don't feel blessed. I thought about changing churches but realized that for awhile there would be a "honeymoon" stage and all would be okay until I would begin to see others struggle with their issues and problems. Our fellow church people will hurt us whether it be intentional or not because we are all fallible human beings. I know I have hurt other people as well and I want to be forgiven I need to forgive as well. What goes around comes around. I have grown stronger because of the struggles I have been through, and God has been there for me, always kind and gentle. Your struggle is between you and God and He will work things out in His timing. I also have a request that you would pray for me as well, that I can find a job, a job that God wants for me. I will pray for you, you healing, don't lose heart, answers will come, Christ is silent but He is working. Trust him, be not afraid. I will have to practice what I preach.

Linda- - posted on 01/07/2009

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Hi

We have struggled with some issues too but we need to forgive and not take offense. It only hurts us. We have to remember the Lord is faithful and he does hear and answer our prayers. The devil comes to steal, destroy and kill. I hope this helps. =D

Candi - posted on 01/07/2009

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It is hard to get back into the habit if you have been out of church for a while. Sometimes things do happen that discourage us from going because we are imperfect people in an imperfect world. We just have to remember we do go to church to fellowship, but we also go to be obediant and to worship our Lord. I will be praying for you and for your husbands back surgery.



God Bless,

Candi

Jennifer - posted on 01/05/2009

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You will be in my prayers. Don't throw out the baby with the bath water.

Know that the Lord knows where you are.

Have you tried a womens bible study? Talk about support and encoragement.

It doesn't need to be at your home church eather.

Shannon - posted on 01/05/2009

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I understand exactly your situation, I had a similar thing happen to me a few years ago. I prayed all the time for the Lord to direct me and my family to a new church but did not feel led for about 2 years. I finally am going to a new church with a wonderful youth program for my kids but what I found in the 2 years that I did not go to church was that I needed to rely solely on God and build my relationship with him so that it was stronger and not to just be going through the motions at church. Although I had 2 years without, I feel me and my family are much closer now to the Lord. Let God lead you ! I learned to trust in what the Holy Spirit was leading me to do. Be patient - It will come

Judy - posted on 01/05/2009

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I too am feeling similar things about church, but for other reasons. I know when I don't atend church my life doesn't feel blessed. I go even though I struggle with it from time to time. Reading all your posts has been helpful for me also. My prayers are with you that you will feel God's pull on your heart instead of Satan's pulling you away.



My sister always says "church is a hospital for sinners"

Alisa - posted on 01/03/2009

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I struggle with the whole "I really don't want to go to church" thing. I was practically born in church, there every time the doors were open. After I got married I didn't go for a while then realized that we needed to be in church. We found one, it was ok. I got pregnant with our first baby and the pastor started getting way off base and we left. I wanted our daughter raised in church so I began a quest of trying to find the right one. After 5 years, we found it. It's been great, but has it's problems (as all do). The important thing is I realized that the reason I go to church is because I love Him. When I get caught up in what some of my fellow believers are doing, I close my eyes and I stare into the eyes of Jesus. I see who I am supposed to be and realize that He is why I go to church. I go (for my kids) to show Him that He is worth my time, my worship, my attention. He is a wonderful Father who loves us regardless of how we 'feel' about things. So church has not become an effort, if I can't go one Sunday I don't worry about it. Jesus said that I am the church, where I go there is the church. Don't confuse it with assembling with other believers! God is good, He wants our hearts whether we are in church or not.

Barb - posted on 01/03/2009

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May I suggest a couple of books to you, if you're a reader? First is WHEN BAD CHRISTIANS HAPPEN TO GOOD PEOPLE by Dave Burchett. The second is EVERYBODY'S NORMAL TILL YOU GET TO KNOW THEM by John Ortberg. Both are very eye opening, comforting and convicting regarding the exact topic you're struggling with. I wish there weren't so many Christians just like you who go through this same thing.

Laura - posted on 01/03/2009

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The longer you stay away the harder it is to go back. Pray about it and try to remember that nothing anyone can do or say is more important than your relationship with Christ. As a Christian and not going to church you take away the opportunity for you to touch someone else and for someone to touch you due to this "unfortunate incident". We all go through times when someone does something that makes us think about leaving our church home but just like our family at home, relationships are messy and sometimes we are dysfunctional and we just have to forgive and move on. Pray through it and God will be there for you.

Joyce - posted on 01/03/2009

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My husband is the pastor of a church in Romania...one thing we have learned is no one is perfect. We have had several families get upset at other people for various reasons and leave. We always tried to counsel them to remember that no one is perfect. Jesus loves you even though you hurt him when you sin and we must choose to love fellow believers even though they hurt us...the Bible tells us this is how others will know we are followers of Christ if we love one another. It isn't easy but we are commanded to love each other. Keep your eyes on Christ and never put another Christian up on a pedestal b/c they will fall off. Think on Jesus' perfect example of how he loved his 12 disciples even though they all failed him at some time or another. Satan would love to destroy the church...don't forsake meeting with other believers just because they aren't perfect. It is one of the hardest things to do, love the unlovely but that is exactly what Jesus did! He loved us in our most unlovely condition.

Joy - posted on 01/02/2009

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Possibly you could find another church you feel comfortable in. There does seem to be quite a bit of division in church bodies which is unfortunate. I too have struggled with going to church in recent months, and for the most ridiculous reasons! I have driven there many times and then driven home without even getting out of the car! I believe that to an extent it is the enemy trying to keep you from going...because you knows it will be good for you! Sunday morning get up, ask God to help you get to church and tell the devil to butt out!

Kristin - posted on 12/21/2008

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So sorry to hear about all your struggles. You know, I recently heard something about our faith that made so much sense to me - as Christians, we believe in a God who is, by very nature, a community (Father, Son and Holy Spirit in relationship with one another). As humans, created in God's image, our very nature is to be in relationship and worship God in community. Unfortunately, our communities and relationship are not as perfectly harmonious as God's! Prayers for you and your family as you seek out a community within which you can celebrate and worship God despite their/your struggles and problems...

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You didn't mention what happened at church, but I encourage you to meet with your pastor to discuss your feelings. He/she can help you work through your problems and would most likely welcome the opportunity to help your family grow in your relationship with our Heavenly Father. And if it was your pastor that you had this problem with, maybe you can still discuss it with them. Part of our walk with God is learning how to forgive others.

Being a part of a church family, especially during this time when your family has health issues, can be a huge benefit for you right now. People can pray for you, help you take care of your son while you take care of your husband, bring you food, and they can be there to lean on.

I wish you the best and hope God shows you the way. Remember that you are not alone through this - God is always with you and loves you very much. Many Blessings.

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Unfortunately man will always let us down and disappoint us no matter what church we attend. That's why it's important to keep our eyes on Jesus because He will never leave us or disappoint us. I would encourage you to stay strong, pray for direction and let God lead your decision.

Lorena - posted on 12/21/2008

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Its so sad to hear that. my church has gone through a lot of hard times. but I always remenber that I go to church to rejoise in his presence to be with other that feel the way I do about God. I know not everyone does but I want to make sure i keep my relationship with him my number one priority. thats all that matters. our children need us to lead them so they one day will feel as we do. I will keep you in my prayers and know God will be with your husband at the time of his surgery. God bless

Trisha - posted on 12/21/2008

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You know Cindy. We are all sinners. We all make mistakes. I want to encourage you to check your motives, why are you going to church. Is it only for the social or is for the spiritual growth. Trust that God will get you through the "unfortanate happening." Once you go back to church HE will guide you through the discomfort. Don't let others cause you to lose what is most important and that is your time worshiping and loving on the Lord. Blessing and I will be praying that you make it back to church during this christmas session. Hope to hear you from you when you go back to church, I know everyone in here will!!!! Blessings!

Kimberly - posted on 12/21/2008

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Sometimes those times when we don't want to go to church is the time that we really need to go. I find it with myself...I make myself go, and the Lord truly blesses me for it. Sometimes it is with the message. Sometimes it is with the people there. Sometimes it is just by a hug I receive when I am there. We are there to encourage, love, and support each other. Don't give up on those who care for you. Go to church and let the Lord bless you! Perhaps, there is someone there who needs you as their blessing as well. God can use all of us if we let Him.

Kristina - posted on 12/18/2008

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Hello. I understand your desire to attend church. I also understand your problem with it. There are Christians who make it hard to want to be around them. But it's about Jesus, not those people. People are always going to let us down, we have to keep our eye on the lord. My husband I just started going to church 4 years ago. It took us awhile to really get involved because of how others acted. Then we realized maybe we should try and put ourselves out there and get to know people on the inside not just what they are portraying. When you do that you realize we all go through the same hurts in life. When we rely on God everything falls into place in HIS time. I didn't know the importance of taking my kids to church but now my 21/2 year old sings 'Jesus loves me' all the time. It is amazing. I know it's hard when people let you down. I will pray for your husband, and for you to find a way back into church.

Amanda - posted on 12/18/2008

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Well first off, prayers from my family to yours are the best thing that we can do, so if it helps at all, I hope you can rest a bit in that. Second, I think that fellowship is important. That there is downtown (when physical needs keep you from church) But if you can tell that is more of an excuse than anything I think maybe you should go. The church where this "bad thing" happened well you don't have to go there... and you don't really NEED to go to church. The Lord says that the building and the "church things" aren't really Him. It's the people the prayer, the fellowship adn the thanking and praising our Lord that he loves so much. I never used to like church either. and now I go to two. The first is for my mother (she is unabelt o drive so i take her there) and the 2nd is for me because I LOVE the church that I have found family in. The funniest thing is that i was raised Catholic and now I attend a Luthern church! BUT The Lord doesn't care about teh donomination either. He cares about your heart and your love for Him and for others. Look into your heart and see what it tells you. To find another church, or to praise with family and friends in private - to create your own bible study and have "church" that way. "church" can be anything anywhere as long as you are doing good by God's will and if you don't know what that is- ask Him, he wants to answer you so that you feel better. :) I hope that helps a bit. take care- God bless

Darlene - posted on 12/18/2008

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Hi Cindy. I think it's wonderful that you have been open and honest about what your struggles are. That can be very hard, almost embarassing at times, to admit that "I have a problem" when we are Christian and aren't "supposed" to have any problems (HA).



I am glad to see that one person mentioned forgiveness....I was beginning to lose hope. Forgiveness is the key to ALL of our relationships...with our husbands, our children, our parents, those we serve with in church, our neighbors. Jesus was very clear about forgiveness in the Bible....forgiving over and over and over no matter how many times you've been wronged. Why do we forgive....especially when we don't want to? Because Jesus himself forgave his killers and mockers while on he cross. He asked His Father to forgive them because they didn't understand what they were doing. He forgave US while we were yet sinners. If we willingly refuse to forgive others, and let's remember they are human too and make mistakes like we do, then we are placing ourselves above God. Because God has forgiven every one of us for OUR mistakes. A dear Christian lady told me as a new Christian to not let other Christians bring me down. I still hear her say that today although she is now in Heaven. She had it on the nose....you keep living for God and yielding to His way even when you don't want to...and let HIM take care of the other people. He is the only one with the power to judge.



Also, if we fail to forgive, it will affect our relationships with others even if you do find another church to be involved in. No matter where you go there will be people....and people are not perfect. It's part of learning to be like Christ....learning to yield to the fruit of longsuffering which is patience with the shortcomings of others. God is VERY longsufferning with His children, woludn't you agree?



I would humbly suggest that, if you can and your husband is settled for a bit, go to ONE church service a week so that you, and you children, can be encouraged by the Word of God. Then you can bring home the encouragement to your husband, share with him what was taught to lift him up as well. And also, if someone has offended you...God says we are to go to them to get things right. If they respond in a "wrong" way, then at least you have done your part. God will take care of the rest. You forgive in your heart so you can move on or else the Devil will use that weakness to continually wear you down and doubt others. May God be with you! Remember....Let Go and Let God!

Dana - posted on 12/18/2008

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Cindy,

I had a couple of more personal questions for you regarding your husband's surgery since (if you read my earlier post) I'm experiencing some of the same things. I am not able to send you a message, so could you please send me a message so I can reply back to you please?

Thanks,

*Dana*

Tracy - posted on 12/18/2008

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Hi, I, too, had a similar situation. My mother was murdered and for a short time, I was the primary suspect. When I walked into church, I was the "girl that murdered her mother". It took me a long time to come back to church, but I realized that only God is perfect, not the church. As a church, we are supposed to act Christlike, but we will all fail and I am finding that churches need forgiveness as much as the individuals within them. Quite simply, address the problem and don't let it fester. I ended up changing churches and found a place where I could celebrate and be with believers. It had an even stronger young adult program (which I needed at the time). I just believe that God works in many ways! That time was my most difficult, but also the time I was drawn closer to God and grew the most in every area of my life. God will get you thru this storm!!! Sometimes he just makes us so uncomfortable that we have to deal with the issue or go where He wants us.



Will be praying for you!

Dana - posted on 12/18/2008

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I have to say that it's great for me to read on here that other Moms are experiencing what I am. I have a husband & 4 little kids (9, 7, 2 1/2 & 1 year) My husband is young too (not even thirty) & he's already had several different back procedures & 1 back surgery. We are preparing for another back sugery - this one is to be a 3 level fusion. We do have a church, but we do not regularly attend. It's hard to get all the kids ready & take them when he doesn't feel like going. Then if he doesn't go, I feel like it looks as if we are fighting. (I know it's crazy). When he does feel like going, we all love to get dressed up & go.



Here's why this is harder for me. I was raised in church. When the doors opened, we were there. My grandma & great-grandma were Pentecostal Holiness preachers (R.I.P.). My little sister & her husband are pastors & my family is in church, so I'm not in short supply of Christian support. I "took a break" from church too because of some horrible things that happened a few years ago (was not with my husband when that happened, so it didn't affect him). He had other things happen to him at church when he was younger & his faith is almost non-existent. It's hard for us because our finances are difficult at times & our kids deserve so much more. It's hard for them to understand about daddy being in pain alot, but they try their best.



Michelle & Cindy - you can understand how this is I'm sure.



I do wish you the best of luck on your husband's back surgery.

*Dana*

Kathy - posted on 12/18/2008

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I understand your feelings as much as the other moms here. It is obvious that the devil tries to keep us from Christ, and he is very good at it. I have noticed that the more I work on my relationship with God, the more Satan attacks me - I am currently fighting depression for what seems to be NO reason. I tried to read many of the other posts, and did not noticed anyone remind you that EVERYONE is human. We are ALL subject to Satan's tricks and temptations. If possible, try to resolve your hurt with the church, sometimes that is what needs to happen, even if it is scary. I have read that just walking away may allow the issue to continue. God may need you to step in and lovingly point out a sin. If that has already happened and no changes have been made, please don't give up praying for your church. Definitely don't give up fellowship with Christians. If and when you find a church that you feel at home with, seek out activities that help you get to know others, and hopefully a good friend. In the meantime, look for other functions or gatherings that you can attend, if possible. I pray that your husband be released from his pain, and that the doctors will be able to do the necessary work to fix his back.

Tia - posted on 12/17/2008

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Hi Cindy,



There was a church that I had attended for about 8 years. I was fairly active in this church. But the one thing that I just had a problem with was that they never disclosed what they were spending the monies on. For example, we would have fundraisers for a variety of things but they never materialized. This went on for years. And they always said the books were open for review. Well, I may do my bookkeeping one way and you may do yours another way. My children grew up in this church, sang in choirs and ushered. I finally got fed up at the 15th Anniversary fundraiser I put together, I had all of the old choir members come back for a concert. It was amazing. But I left the church and did not go back to that church or any other for over a year. Now, I am happy and blessed to be apart of another church that is in it's baby stages, 3 years old. I am secretary of the women's ministry. Mind you, I had decided that I just wanted to go to a church and do nothing, just go and go home! But God had other plans. Thus far, I am at home!!! Please take the time to pray and ask God what it is that He wants you to do. There you will find your answer. But be patient! Be Blessed

Michelle - posted on 12/17/2008

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Cindy, I don't know you and I have not read the other replies, but I have to tell you that I can totally relate to your story, my husband has not worked for over 5 years because he hurt his back, my children are now 13, 16 and 17. I feel like they missed out on so much because of my husband not being able to do a lot of things. But the one thing that has kept us all together and happy is the Lord! We try to always keep Him first, and I say try because we are human. But please if you are uncomfortable going to that church, try a different one. My family and I were going to another church for about 4 years and then we started going to another one, it was very hard because of some of the people there were like family. We now have been at this church for 7 years, my oldest daughter has sang on the praise team every Sun. since she was twelve! I also know for a fact that we are very involved with our children and I can say they have never, drank, smoked or try drugs of any kind, they are very dedicated Christians, and that is not very easy in this day and age, and yes they go to public school. I will be praying for your husband and you, back surgery is not an easy thing, my husband has done it twice. Remember we are God's children and just as we want to love and protect our children, God wants to love and protect us!!

Cindy - posted on 12/17/2008

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Thank you for all you replies and prayers. I should emphasize that this did not happen in my church home but my mother's church. I am just struggling to be with other Christians in general. I really appreciate all your advice and I am praying for that first love again . I just want to feel that longing again to be around other Christians. Thank you and God Bless everyone and their family.

Kelly - posted on 12/16/2008

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Please don't give in to the feeling that "there is no point going to church"....maybe there just isn't a reason for you to go to THAT church. Just remember that a church is made up of regular people just like you and me...and that people make mistakes. My husband and I visited several churches over a period of years before we found the one that was right for us. (that time frame also included a 2 year break after a church we were attending also had something unfortunate happen) I also understand the ease of not going and using something as a reason, although I never had anything as legitimate as recovering from back surgery, but once you find the right church for you and your family you'll quit looking for reasons to stay home and start looking forward to going to church. Until you find a church, can I suggest mine? To some people it's a little unusual...and, to be honest, it was to me in the beginning too. I belong to a church that has one main pastor, and one main location, and then several satellite churches each with it's own campus pastor. That means that everyone not at the main location views the weekly sermon via tape. One of the remarkable things about this type of ministry is that everything is online if you miss a service....or, if you have to be out of commission for awhile recovering from back surgery, you can still watch the weekly message. I know this will not replace finding a church to call your own since part of the blessing of attending church is fellowshipping with other Christians and making friends with your same beliefs...not to mention getting your son involved...but maybe the online messages could help while you decide what your next step will be. The website is www.seacoast.org. I will be praying for you and your family, and especially for your husband's surgery on the 30th. Merry Christmas, Kelly

Joy - posted on 12/16/2008

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It is a hard time you're going through now, and we'll pray for you both. You'll find that 'bad things' happen to us to draw us closer to our God, not to hurt us. He wants us to depend on Him and run to Him for help and comfort. Get in your Bible everyday - it's His love letter to you. Find a good church in your area, if you're not happy with what happened, because, like a coal that gets kicked away from a campfire, you'll get cold. And what better place than a loving church family can you get support, baby-sitting, meals brought in, financial help, prayer, and loving friends? If you can't find a good Bible-believing church in your area, I'd be glad to look up one through our church. I go to an awesome independent Baptist church of 1,000, and I have no clue what we'd do without them! Besides - - there is that little command in Hebrews about "not forsaking the assembling of yourselves together". You're right, it is VITAL for your son. Find your encouragement and strength in God first (READ your Bible!), then open up to a fellow Christian. If that lady fails you, try another til you find a kindred spirit who cares and will minister to you right now when you need it so badly! Go to the pastor and ask for prayer. But mainly go to God.

Kay - posted on 12/16/2008

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Hi, Cindy. I'm a "future preacher's wife" if that makes sense. My husband is currently in seminary. I feel often times like I should be the one in seminary. I am constantly the one reminding HIM every time he gives a sermon to proclaim the gospel in EVERY sermon. It is JESUS who saves us from our sins, JESUS who delivers us out of the darkness of depression, JESUS who conquered even the biggest enemy - death itself. If our faith is in Jesus, we have nothing to fear, no matter how discouraging our world looks - especially in economic times like these it is good to know that JESUS is the answer. I'd like to give you a verse that my grandmother gave me, Matthew 6:25-34. If you believe that, truly, then you will never have to worry about the things of this earth. In reply to your problem, Cindy, I strongly suggest you find another church home because it doesn't sound to me like you are in a good Bible-based church that is proclaiming the gospel. And one of the ways you can tell is NOT to look at the preacher. You need to look at the other members. What are they like? Do they live out their faiths daily, or do they go out partying on Saturday night and "morph into Christians" on Sunday morning? Unfortunately, I am not in a Bible-based church, and I can't stand it. I would leave, but my husband is tied to that church because of his seminary commitments. One of the ways I found sustenance is through another church's stay-at-home mom's group. They have welcomed me warmly, even though I'm not a member of their church. I strongly suggest you find some sort of "small group" within a church with whom you share commonalities. God created us for relationships. I will pray for you that you are able to find one soon that will uplift you and enable you to do the missions that God has called you to do on this earth. It will be my honor to pray for your husband to be healed of these pains. There is a wonderful website I found recently on scriptures for healing:
http://www.savedhealed.com/healing.htm
Search for the ones that are right for your husband and pray together. Thanks for sharing your problem with us, Cindy. We all need to be supportive moms and lift each other up when we have troubles.

[deleted account]

I worked for a church for the past two years and really felt like I didn't belong. After awhile I had to same feeling you do that I just didn't want to go to church but I knew that it was important. I think the best advice I can give is to connect with the Lord in other ways as well as going to church. Find a bible study group, do your own bible reading, start a prayer journal, or do some mission work. None of this has to be through your church. I think these were good things for me to do to remember that church is not just about the fellowship with other believers, although that is an important part. It's about hearing God's word and knowing that you are forgiven and loved. When I'm more connected to the Lord outside church I find that I enjoy the church experience much more.

And one more thing, don't be afraid to start looking for a new church. I finally had to stop going to my old church because the emotional stress was getting in the way of my worship.

Good luck and I'll be praying for you.

Nicole - posted on 12/16/2008

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First of all I am so proud of you to actually come out and talk about your struggle. Second I am a Minister at my church, and over the year's I have felt the same way as you. I even took a break for a few months, but it never felt right for me. God kept pulling me back. I don't know what happened but it is definetly something you should pray to God about. I would suggest talking to the pastor no matter decision you make, he is responsible for your soul. Also you should forgive the people who hurt you. So you can be free, otherwise it eats away at you like a cancer. At this time in your life you really need to haave fellowship with believers. You need to pull on them for strength. God loves you and he has a apurpose for your life. A pastor is the one to teach you. Don't give up on God and the assembely of other believers. God may tell you to go somewhere else, but just like any relationship you have to face what haappened not run from it. Sickness and pain is not of God so believe in your heart with no doubt regarding your husband. May God continue to bless you aand keep you in perfect peace. Nicole

Julie - posted on 12/16/2008

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Sure thing. I would love to pray for you guys.
Have you considered another church?

Nancy - posted on 12/16/2008

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You know there's nothing more the devil wants than to keep you and your family from going to church. He celebrates every Sunday you don't go. The devil knows our weaknesses and he knows how to use them for his gain. The fact that you're not "wanting" to be around other Christians is also proof that the devil is working in your life. He is slowing pulling you away from all that is good and that has to do with God and fellowship with other believers. He wants to keep you in the "dark" and not in the "light".

Laurie - posted on 12/16/2008

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You can always find another church home, if what happened in your other church. We need to be able to fellowship with other believers.

Keely - posted on 12/16/2008

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i was hurt by the church and stopped going for a year or so. I have recently started going to a small house church and its not always easy or fun. I dont like trusting people, ect. Its all about attitude. Some days are easier some are harder. Keep your son in your focus and if for nothing else do it for him. He is not just a child to take care of and teach, but an eternal soul that is in your hands to shape and mold. He looks to you for an example. Be a godly example for your son, show him that the church can be a joy and blessing> i will be praying for you.

Julie - posted on 12/16/2008

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I would like to add something else. I hope the back surgeries go well, but one thing you can also do, is have your husband say faith confessions. Perhaps you have heard of Dody Osteen. She was diagnosed with terminal liver cancer. She began saying healing scriptures 3 times a day and within 2 months began to see a change. I am saying faith confessions as well for something. Healing belongs to us as Christians. Jesus paid a price for us to receive healing. But He leaves it up to us to enforce what is ours.

Crystal - posted on 12/16/2008

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If I have learned anything about faith, it has bee this year. My husband and I are both soldiers in the US Army. He had come back in 2006 from his second deployment, this one was from Iraq. He had come back with severe PTSD along with a bout of other mental issues. He and I have been married 11 years this next week and we have a beautiful 9 year old daugher. We are Mormon and sealed as a family. However, on Mothers Day when he had returned home he moved out, started drinking heavily and became a soldier we used complain about. I am now a single soldier mom and when all of this came about.....it taught me that I had to walk a lot harder in my faith because Heavenly Father puts trials in our lives to test of our faith and dedication to him and we have to look beyond us and what is around us and see the glory of God and what he does and what he can do for us. We are blessed and doing just fine, it's just that Heavenly Father needed me to grow! I love having my faith and I have seen it make Mckenzy into a very strong and reverent child! May you find it in you to look to Heavenly Father again! Times in society are soo horrible and we all are being tested. I will pray for you and your family, in return, please pray for mine. I hope I touched your heart a little bit more than when you started your letter.

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