I read an article lately written about the reasons people leave a particular church. Perhaps they don't leave the denomination but they do decide to leave "their church". What amazed me beyond measure was the number of reasons given that could not be termed as anything but petty. Seems it takes just one minor mistake to make them stomp out in a huff with the door slamming behind them.
It is every persons right to worship in a place that makes them feel comfortable and which teaches doctrine as they believe it to be. But how can it happen that they leave a church they have attended for most of their lives over an insignificant incident?
I have to believe that those who choose to move from one place to the other under these ccircumstances are not being truthful...to those they are leaving but more importantly to themselves. If we make such a life altering decision without prayerfully and honestly looking at the reasons, we are leaving ourselves open to be disappointed again, and again.
These situations are heartbreaking and unhealthy. The person leaving is separating themselves from a group that has known and loved them for years. Through good times and bad, they break away from the very ones to whom they should be turning. If something has happened to cause trauma or even just hurt feelings, are we not better off to gather with the support group who knows us best?
This is not aimed at any particular person, group or church...it is just a response to what I've read and is really no more than "stream of consciousness". An attempt to help me understand.
The bottom line is, how can we minister to a dark and hurting world if we cannot see any farther than the end of our own noses?