Why Do People Leave a Church


I may have covered this topic a few years ago when I had my blog at another location. Every now and then I get to thinking about what stops a person from going to church or changing churches.

ImageMy family moved to St. George about 19 yrs ago. We have never regretted moving here and for the most part we have always gone to the same church. Or should I say I have gone to the same church. There was one time though that I stopped going to my church and that was because of the new pastor that came. His calling I must say should not have been to become a pastor. How he ever got voted on to be our pastor is beyond me. During the short time he was at our church, I did what some would call church hopping. This went on for 2 yrs until others at my church seen that something was wrong.

During those two years away from my church I did find a wonderful little church that met in an elementary school. It was a Christian Missionary Alliance Church. I really liked their church doctrine and the people there. It was like a second home to me. I enjoyed mostly everyone I met there and I still talk to them. I like Pastor Marc and his family. I actually learned quite a bit from him and how to be a better disciple for Christ and to witness to others.  I never had the need to move my membership from St. George Community Church to Oasis though. In my heart I knew St. George Community Church was the place for me.

ImageEventually they did get a new pastor and he was wonderful. I adored his wife and we got to know his family. He is the kind of pastor I would consider a healing pastor. Pastor Lary and Donna had a hard road ahead of them. There was a separation in our church and lot of hurt that needed healing. God knew we needed them at this time. They were with us for a number of years and then we were blessed with Pastor Dean and Ruth. It was a very easy transition when Lary and Donna left. God blessed our church in many ways.

My daughters are both adults and married. They have their own families and needs. Beckiah and Jason along with their children have chosen another church that best fits the needs of their family. I would love them to come to my church, but they are where God wants them to be. My other daughter Jessica still does things with our church  every now and then and everyone at church misses her and still asks about Jessica, Jason and JJ. JJ went with me to church the other day and everyone loved seeing him and made him feel like he was home. He started to cry because he was happy they were nice to him. But I know that no matter what I say or anyone else says, that people have to choose a church where they can grow and where God wants them to be. I’m very proud of my daughters and their families for still going to church, even if it isn’t mine. But they are listening to God and doing what God wants them to do in their lives. I couldn’t be prouder of them. I’m honored to be their momma.

ImageI asked my husband why he doesn’t like to go to church. And he was very honest with me. First he said that sometimes the music is so long or the pastor goes on for so long that he gets lost in the message. I then asked a friend of mine about the church she goes to. She said she feels like God isn’t part of the church. They do things and sing songs, but it is like going to church that is all about putting on a show or of hearing themselves talk. I had to asked about what they meant. They said when the pastor does everything and controls everything. It’s like they go on and on and their faith seems fake. They say the right thing, but it isn’t sincere. It’s all talk and no action. I didn’t want to ask who she was talking about since I know people from many churches.  I will have to do a blog on why people stop going to church all together.

One of my friends was going on about why she is having a hard time going to church. And she was saying that she feels like she is obligated to go. She doesn’t enjoy going because of issues that go on at the church. I didn’t go into the whys because I figured she would tell me why if she wanted me to know. But she doesn’t feel that she is where she needs to be. When she prays over her feelings and how she dreads going to church, she feels guilty by the answers she is receiving.

I can understand that because when I left our church for two years, I felt guilty and was made to feel guilty during that whole time. Not really by the pastor, but by some of the people. When I would go to church I had to breath before going into the church. I felt like I had this bitterness in my soul and that was really getting in the way of me enjoying the message for the day. During the sermon or the music, I would sigh to myself and I didn’t know how unhappy I was until one Sunday when I came home from church and decided I couldn’t do this anymore. This wasn’t where I needed to be at this point in my walk with Christ. When I started listening to God and checking out other churches, I felt like a boulder has been lifted off my shoulder. My bitterness was getting in the way of worshiping Christ. Many at my church didn’t understand where I was coming from, but I knew I needed something else.

If someone was to ask me what they should do if they were unhappy where they are going to church at or about checking out other churches. I would say to them to pray about it first. I would say that maybe God is the one putting it on your heart to go somewhere else. God may have other things in store for you that you’re not aware of. If someone gets upset because you are looking at other churches, then let them be upset. You have to go where God is leading you. If someone guilts you into staying at church and you are still unhappy, then you aren’t doing yourself, the church or God any good.

For myself, I love where I go. I have been there for 19 yrs and even though I went somewhere else for 2 yrs, I have always been a member. I may not always like someone who goes there and I may not like the message. But I know that God is the center of all things. And like all families, not all agree and sometimes we fight, storm out, but we come back. St. George Community to me is my family of God. I love the fact that they know me anywhere I go. I don’t feel like I have to be showy or someone I’m not. I don’t have to be politically correct. We are a melting pot of Christians that love the Lord and others. I can’t wait to see what is in store for our church when we get our new pastor.

I was looking for information on this topic so then it isn’t just my personal thoughts, but what the Bible says about leaving a church and looking for a new one…  So for any one out there looking for a new church or moving to a new area, here are some Biblical Scriptures to read and to see what God has to say about this topic.


Reasons to Leave A Church

  1. Truth is not being taught
  • Acts 20:29-31
  • Rev. 2:12-16

2. Leadership is overly controlling and unloving

  • 3 John 9-11

3. Leadership is biblically unqualified

  • 1 Tim. 3:1-7;
  • Titus 1:7-9

4. Pastor and/or leaders are living in sin

  • 1 Tim. 5:19-21

5. Leadership does not deal with sin

  • Matthew 18:15-18;
  • 1 Cor. 5:1-13

What To Look For In A Church. On the positive side, here are some guidelines for choosing or staying in a church


– are qualified

  • 1 Tim. 3:1-7;
  • Titus 1:7-9

– are godly examples

  • Hebrews 13:7;
  • 1 Peter 5:3

– are self-sacrificing

  • John 21:15-19;
  • Acts 20:31


– teaches the Bible in depth

  • Nehemiah 8:8;
  • 1 Tim. 4:13;

– has passion to teach truth

  • 2 Timothy 2:2;
  • James 3:1

– has a passionate love for Jesus

  • John 21:15-17
  • Phil. 3:8


– people are loving

  • Hebrews 10:24-25

– ministers together

  • Acts 2:42;
  • Hebrews 6:10

– supports the leadership

  • Hebrews 13:7, 13;
  • Hebrews 6:10
The church needs to be on fire for the Lord Jesus. Some churches are looking back over their shoulders at the years when their church was dynamic and growing. Now their church may not be growing and may even be decreasing in size. They may have a wonderful church building, successful leaders from the world, and a radio or a television ministry. But these are not the marks of God’s ideal church.
Ultimately, God is looking for biblically qualified leaders who are eagerly seeking an intimate relationship with Jesus, and as a result are shepherding the men and women in the church. One of the most significant functions of the leadership team is that they are good Bible teachers and they are teaching. The leadership team is training men and women to be the future leaders in the church. They are seeking to train others who will eventually take over their ministries. That is true disciples. Otherwise, the training is merely book study and empty activity without any fulfillment.
OK, so now I’m done with this topic. Not too sure why I posted this now. Maybe because our church is in the middle of a transition to a new pastor and I’m excited to see where our church is going and love the fact that the new pastor we are looking at believes in the Bible and is a Man of God.

Thinking on Christmas

nativity3-620x494I know this is a weird topic for this time of year. Christmas seems to come faster and faster each year it seems. I don’t think it is because there are less days, but that our lives are so busy and I hate to say it, but Christmas is expensive. It should be about Christ and while I think about Christ first, others may not.

I have been pondering this idea since last year. My idea is that instead of having Christmas on December 25th, we would have it on Easter Sunday.

There are many historians that believe that the birth of Christ took place in October or around there. And others say in the spring time. The Bible tells us that shepherds were staying out in the fields overnight when Jesus was born (Luke 2:8), but in that part of the world it would have been far too cold at night to do so in December. What is more likely is that He was born in the Spring, perhaps between March and May. Whatever the time of year, it is virtually impossible to identify the actual date. Some have also said that the birth of Christ took place during September or October. So let’s look at those times and why they say that.

birth-of-jesusThe typical story we hear repeated is:

“It’s about 2000 years ago, the evening of December 25. Mary rides into Bethlehem on a donkey, urgently needing to deliver her baby. Although it’s an emergency, all the innkeepers turn them away. So they deliver baby Jesus in a stable. Then angels sing to the shepherds. Afterwards, they all join three kings with camels in worshiping the quiet, newborn.”

The problem is, this story may be almost entirely wrong. The events surrounding the birth have been retold so many times and in so many ways—in plays, poetry, books and movies—that most people have a distorted view of the true events. The only accurate record is found in the Holy Bible, God’s Word.

Was Jesus born on December 25, or in December at all? Although it’s not impossible, it seems unlikely. The Bible does not specify a date or month. One problem with December is that it would be unusual for shepherds to be “abiding in the field” at this cold time of year when fields were unproductive. The normal practice was to keep the flocks in the fields from Spring to Autumn. Also, winter would likely be an especially difficult time for pregnant Mary to travel the long distance from Nazareth to Bethlehem (70 miles).

One of the more common — but still often overlooked — debates around Christmas time is ​when ​the wise men visited Jesus. While most nativity sets come complete with the “kings” to set next to a newborn Jesus, there is actually evidence to suggest they visited Jesus much later when he was a young “child” and not a “baby.”

camels3wisemenMatthew 2: 1-12 – The Visit of the Magi

After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written: “‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.” Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.” After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.  And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.

Additionally verse 16 notes that after the wise men told King Harod of their plan to visit the little “king” and they never returned, Herod ordered all children under two years old killed. That seems to suggest that Jesus was not a baby at the time, and that even Herod thought he could be older.

Many popular interpretations of Jesus’ birth show the baby sitting near farm animals in a stable. However, we’re not quite sure that this is how the events actually unfolded. Let’s start with the word “inn.” According to Witherington, in Greek (the word is “kataluma”) it can also mean “guest room.” The Biblical expert continues:

So what we must envision is that the holy family had to stay in the back portion of the ancestral home in Bethlehem, where they would have kept the beast of burden (hence the feeding trough referred to).

While the “where” question is certainly important when discussing Jesus’ birth, so is the “when.” Christians have been celebrating their savior’s birth for quite some time, but no one is really sure when it actually happened. Dec. 25 is merely the anniversary that has been chosen to commemorate Christ’s birth — not the actual date.

Happy_Birthday_Jesus_by_RSRKingdomStarsMy Plan: 

So this year after calling my daughters and family we are going to actually do a Birthday Party for Christ on December 25th. We will hold that day to celebrate the fact that Jesus was born to a virgin. We will be doing our Christmas on at the same time as Easter. We don’t know when Christ was born, but we know He was. And that’s what our December 25th will be. There will be no gifts for each other. My Christmas tree, cards and gifts will be done on Easter Sunday. We will have cake, ice cream and all things that would be used to celebrate a birthday. We will bring a letter or share with each other what we will do for Christ. I hope that everyone in my family will enjoy this because on Easter we will be celebrating the fact that Jesus came to us as a baby and he died and rose again so we can live forever. If people get Christmas cards at Easter time, please know this is the reason why we are doing this. I may still do them in December since everyone else won’t be on the same page as I am.

Living in the Past


What is the best way to get past the hurt of a bad childhood or life hurts? I have touched on this topic about 5 years ago when some friends and I were talking about our childhoods and what it was like growing up.

The best way to get beyond a bad past is to create a better future. No easy feat, for sure. Your childhood is what it was…no changing that. Your future is what you make it, no matter your age. This is fully what I believe. When it comes to some things, it may be easier said then done.

My friend made the statement that her family ruined her life and she will never be happy because of the abuse.  What struck me about this comment was that she was blaming them for everything that went on. She left home when she was young and had a number of failed marriages. Those failed marriages were her parents fault and the bully’s fault on the school playground. Was it really her parents fault and the bullies fault that her marriage failed and her life is falling apart? Maybe in part, but not entirely.

ImageWhen I was growing up I didn’t have the best childhood like millions of other children in this world. My parents had their problems and there was many things that went on. But do I blame them for what I do with my life now? I would say no. The reason I say no is because I have learned from those experiences, I believe I am a better person for the suffering… more tolerant of others, less judgmental. My parents made mistakes and did the wrong things just like any other parent does or has. Maybe not in the same way, but still mistakes.

I have learned to accept my differences and leave the past behind. We are not wearing big signs that say “abused” or “dysfunctional parents” so it is up to us to be what we want to be.

ImageEveryone is guilty of bad parenting at one time or another. I know I have my share of loosing my temper when my daughters didn’t do what they should be doing or snuck out the window. There was a time I grounded Jessica for eating my very last donut that I was very much looking forward too and in the heat of the moment she was grounded for a month, lol.  There may be others like me that grounded your child for something his sibling did, and never listened to their side of the story. I would like to challenge anyone that is angry at parents, family members and such to write a list of the things you have learned from those experiences. Not just the bad, but the good. If my parenting skills and past mistakes were held against me in the court of law, I think I would get life lol.I do have to say that my daughters turned out to be great parents and they will make their own set of mistakes I’m sure…

There are all forms of abuse, neglect and such that can make ones life miserable and make a person feel like they are worthless. But that doesn’t have to be. There is so much help out there  and living in the past brings nothing but tears and heartache.

For instance, someone I know ended up in a lot of trouble legally. Now this person has been out of the home for a very long time. She left the nest around 18 or so. Now she is right around 45 or so. But because of the drug use and in and out of jail they claim before the judge that they were abused and it was their upbringing that brought them to the point they are now. My reaction to her statement was a bit insensitive I guess.

When I asked my friend if her parents put that pot into her hands and made her smoke it, she said indirectly yes! Was it her parents fault that she was caught driving while intoxicated, she said yes! Was it her parents fault that she decided that she no longer wanted to be a parent and that it was more important to be with her friends, she said yes! I then proceeded to ask her why she thought it was her parents fault when she is the one who made those decisions to hang out with the wrong people and put her friends and such before her own family. She then went on to say that she was abused and her parents didn’t say they loved her all the time like some people do. They didn’t spend time with her because they were always at work or doing other things. They didn’t get alot of birthday parties because they never wanted to spend the money or couldn’t.

Well! As a parent who had to struggle paying bills and not always wanting to go out to work so we can provide a roof over my daughters head and make sure they had cloths and all other needs, I had no sympathy for her. My daughters didn’t always get a grand birthday party because it was hard enough to keep the power on. They were told I loved them and there were many days I would wake up in a very fowl mood. I told her that it is now time to start taking responsibility for your own life and stop blaming everyone else because your life is screwed up. I let her know that she was the one who made all those bad choices and why she lived on the street. She decided to smoke pot and drive drunk. Her parents may have been crappy but there is a time to get on with your life and stop living in the past and move forward.

Forgiveness I think is a big part of getting past the past and living in the future. I know from my own experiences that if I hold onto the anger and resentments of the past, I dwell on them alone and it is almost impossible to live my life the way I should be and as God intended me to. Many believe that in order to forgive someone that we must forget and that is far from the truth. We should remember and not let it happen again. But when I truly forgive someone I don’t bring it up again and if I find I do, I pray that God will help me deal with this. Forgiveness isn’t for the other person always, it’s for us. If we can’t forgive we are like a pot stewing. Eventually everything is going to blow up when it gets to a certain point. And that point could have all sorts of disastrous results.

I have had to ask for forgiveness many times with my daughters when I would fly off the handle and that is OK. They were usually very gracious about it. Not always, but usually. We would have family meetings if others in the family needed to talk about things.

For Parents: I found topic while searching for information for this post and really liked it.

“There are no perfect parents, and we all make bad parenting decisions from time to time. But if you feel that you’ve lost touch, don’t know how to handle your child, or you can’t control your own anger or problems and it’s interfering with your family life, it might be time to seek professional help.”

One last thing, I know some may be ready for my one last thing, lol. But there is a lot of power in the word forgive. I’m very thankful for those who have forgiven me of my wrong doings and transgressions. Also, if anyone is free from sin and making mistakes I want to meet that person. There is NOT one perfect person and parents included in this world. We can only do the best we can do and go forward. I have chosen to not live in the past because it really makes for a bad day. And not always do people know they have hurt or offended someone.

No one will ever have the perfect childhood. We all suffer embarrassment, humiliation, bullying and some form of abuse. But in order to have a peaceful and happy adulthood you need to move past the painful childhood memories, forgive whatever wrongs have been committed and ditch the blame. The current state of your adult life is not your parents fault…..it is up to your to take the bad and turn it into something good.  But we can all move on and make our lives better.

Here is a clip from the show Facts of Life… So now I’m done 🙂

Our Pets and Fireworks

fireworksThe 4th of July can make for great times with our family and friends. But that is’t always the case for all family members. The ones I’m speaking of our our four-legged friends.

The reason I want to cover this topic is because of our own experience over 20 yrs ago when we lived in Phoenix, AZ. We had two dogs named Rick and AJ. My husband and I took our young daughters to the fireworks display that was close to our house. We put our dogs outside. We had an 6ft high perimeter fence so we thought all was good. Little did we know that things weren’t good.

As soon as the fireworks started going off the dogs must have gotten scared. AJ which was a golden retriever became so scared that he broke through the back fence. Rick was soon to follow. We came home and the dogs were gone. Shortly after we arrived home, we received a call that AJ was hit by a car. He was more scared of the loud bangs then he was of cars. They told us he was in bad shape.

AJ broke his leg and had to have surgery. They asked us if we wanted to spend the money to try to save him or should they put him down. We opted for trying to save him. We brought him and Rick home and AJ died anyhow a couple months later. There was just too much damaged with him.

The following day as I was heading to a bus stop. I noticed two dogs that must have been tied to leases in their back yards. These adult dogs became so scared that they tried to jump the back fence of their homes and ended up hanging themselves.

My husband and I have never left our dogs at home alone or unsupervised on the 4th of July or on New Years. This was such a horrific experience that I would never want to live through again and I would never want to put my dogs through again.

thDr. Marty Becker of Vetstreet.com points out that it’s perfectly logical for dogs to hate fireworks: “Fireworks are bombs, for Pete’s sake. It makes sense to be scared!” Marc Elias, principal officer of Pooch Pals LLC, agrees: “Simply put, fireworks, to your dog, is like an artificial lightning/thunderstorm times ten!” Humans may come to enjoy the explosive annual tradition, because of the visual payoff .

And many dogs’ method of coping — bolting at top speed, then hiding — is why animal shelters see such a big uptick in intakes right around the Fourth, Elias adds. “There are two directions they can take, flight or fight.

Not only are there the phobia dangers, there is the health risks to our pets if they should get into them. I found this list on petmd.com… Not all states allow fireworks unless they are done by the city. But if you live in a state like I do, this may help you keep your pets safe.

If you do store fireworks in your house, keep in mind that unused fireworks can be poisonous if ingested by curious dogs or cats. Fireworks contain hazardous chemicals such as:

  • Chlorates (these are potent oxidizing agents which are harmful to red blood cells and kidneys)
  • Soluble barium salts (these can cause a life-threatening drop in potassium)
  • Sulfur Coloring agents (which can contain dangerous heavy metals)

Clinical signs of firework poisoning include:

  • Vomiting
  • A painful abdomen
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Tremors Seizures
  • Acute kidney failure
  • Bone marrow changes
  • Shallow breathing
  • Yellowing of the skin (jaundice)

As with any poison, the severity of the poisoning is dependent on the type of firework, the amount ingested, and what type of coloring agents it contains. Thankfully, severe poisoning isn’t very common.

Finally, don’t let your dog near the backyard fireworks show you may be having. Fearless, unsupervised dogs may actually be curious enough to approach a lit firework, resulting in thermal burn injuries to the nose, face, lips and mouth, as well as eye irritation. Avoid any problems by keeping pets a safe distance from fireworks — lit or unlit!

I didn’t do this blog posting to stop you from having a nice fourth of July and enjoying fireworks. I did this so that everyone is aware that what is fun for us, isn’t always fun for our pets. We need to make sure our pets are safe.