So you’re a new Christian and you’re wondering where you go from here. Or maybe you’ve been a Christian for a while, but you sense the Lord is telling you to changes churches. Or, as unfortunate that it is, something has happened and you need to find a new church home. How do you do that? How do you find a place that will help you be who God has called you to be and do what He has called you to do.
It would be great if it was as easy as stepping into the next church down the road, but it isn’t. While many people try to find a church home that is suits them, that’s not how God sees it. God doesn’t want you to find a church home that makes you comfortable, although it most likely will. He’s more concerned about you growing spiritually and accomplishing what He has of you to do.
The great part about that is in His perfect will is fullness of joy. In His perfect will is every supply and resource that you need for life. Today we’re going to look at 5 things you can do to find the church home that God has for you. Let’s jump in.
Seek God’s Guidance
The first step in finding a new church home, like everything else, is Seek God’s Guidance. Romans 8:14 tells us, “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.” We’re told specifically that as children of God, we can expect God to guide us. In Matthew 7:7, Jesus tells us, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”
The first thing we need to do is pray and ask God to lead you and show you were you need to go. Too often we look for a church to suit us instead of the church God has to bless us. The church you attend very literally can mean the difference between life and death. So before you go to Google or anywhere else, go to God. Spend an extended amount of time waiting on Him, seeking Him, and getting your direction from Him.
Evaluate the Teaching
One of the biggest questions to ask yourself when visiting a new church is: Does this teaching agree with the Word of God? What that means is that you have to know the Word of God. You have to be a student of the Word. Acts 17:11 says, “Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.” This is talking about the believers in Berea actually judging whether the things the Apostle Paul preach agreed with the Word of God that they had at the time. If they could do it then, to the Apostle Paul, by all means we should do it today.
Does The Church Agree With The Bible
A church’s commitment to biblical truths is vital for spiritual growth. After all, are you looking for a church or a social club. If it’s a social club, join a gym or 4-H or one of the numerous social clubs out there. But if you’re desiring to be pleasing to God, then you have to put aside any of your opinions and make decisions that are based on His Word and His Spirit. Just as those believers in Berea searched the scriptures about what the Apostle Paul taught, we have to search the scriptures about what the church teaches, believes, and practices a whole. And you know what, you might not agree with all of it. That’s okay. You don’t have to. It is possible that you could be wrong (yes, I said it). It’s also possible that the church is wrong, but it’s such a minor point that it doesn’t matter. It just depends on what that point is. That’s between you and God.
Seek Authentic Fellowship
A good church provides a nurturing environment for genuine fellowship with other believers. That doesn’t mean the church is a social club, but that it gives believers opportunity to spend time together to grow as a community. Proverbs 27:17 says that iron sharpens iron. That means that the people you hang out with will determine who you become. You need to hang out with fellow Christians that believe the same as you. Church is not the place where you show up two minutes before service starts and leave as they’re closing the service. You get to know people. It’s called a church family. Hebrews 10:24-25 encourages us to “consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another.” Look for a church where you can build meaningful relationships, find support, and experience genuine community. You are not an island. We’re all doing life together and it helps when you have others going through (or who have gone through) the same things that have the experience and wisdom to help you, just as you help them.
Consider the Fruit
Evaluating the fruit of a church will help you find the right spiritual home. In Matthew 7:15-16, Jesus warns against false prophets, saying, “You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?” That’s true not just in prophets, but in people and in churches. Assess the impact of the church in the community and the lives of its members. Look for signs of lives being changed, the compassion and love of the people and the church, and a commitment to serving others. A church that bears good fruit is a testament to its faithfulness and effectiveness.
Remember, the church is not just a building but a community of believers who share a common faith and mission. Take your time, seek wisdom from God, and trust that He will lead you to the right place. Remember the words of Psalm 37:5, “Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him, and he will act.” Remember that the most important factor in finding a church is not a place where you feel comfortable or loved, that has great outreach programs, wonderful kids and youth ministries, or great teaching. The most important factor is this: Where does God want you to be planted? If you find that place, all those other things will fall together.
Church Finder (www.churchfinder.com): Church Finder allows you to search for churches based on location, denomination, and various criteria. It provides detailed information about each church, including service times, ministries, and contact details.
Crosswalk Church Finder (www.crosswalk.com/church): Crosswalk Church Finder offers a comprehensive database of churches across different denominations. You can search for churches based on location and denomination and access information about their beliefs, worship styles, and ministries.
USA Churches (www.usachurches.org): USA Churches provides a directory of churches throughout the United States. It offers search filters based on location, denomination, church size, and more. You can find detailed profiles of churches, including their statement of faith, service schedules, and ministries.