Sunday, September 16, 2007

Harvest, Sectionals, and Church

Thank you all so much for your prayers! We were all quite healthy for the gymnastics meet. My daughter did very well, and scored mostly in the 8's (which I hear is good for a first meet). She qualified for sectionals, and I guess that must be a good thing considering her coach was smiling when she said it ( I really know nothing about gymnastics... yet). Anyway, we are SO proud of her!

This week I imagine homeschool will be put on hold. Our garden has decided to "ripen" everything at once, so my week will be spent canning tomatoes, beans, corn, and pickles. My apple tree decided to ripen as well. The tree was quite fruitful this year and I lost count after 200 apples (seriously). That means canning applesauce, baking pies, fruit leathers, etc. While I love "domesticating" for the fall season, I always put on a few pounds. I feel like I'm barely maintaining the weight I lost over the Summer, and it might only take a few pies to put me over the edge. Oh, to be blessed with self control. Could I make a pie and not eat it? Nope... not possible.

We have found a church!!! YEAH! It was actually right under our noses the entire time. We had dismissed it because the worship is not to our liking. Still, we had seen so much "fruit" coming out of the body that we gave it another look. No church is perfect, and it is very difficult to find one that encompasses all the elements we desire, so my husband and I took a long look at what we could compromise.

We could NOT compromise doctrine. It had to teach the scriptures. We also HAD to have a safe, solid place for our children to grow in the Lord.

Now what seems to vary so much between churches that met these MANDATORY criteria was
1. The worship
2. The preaching
3. The body (or community of believers)

What area would we except mediocrity?

What could we get elsewhere?

Good worship is not hard to find. Whether at a Saturday service in our neighboring town, a Christian concert, or with the Newsboys Devotion CD in my own living room.

Preaching can be found on TV, the radio, in books... no shortage there, so as long as the preacher was teaching God's word... we could forgo the entertaining charismatic preacher.

Now we come to the church body. If we had a need.. a real need, would my Devotion CD pray for me? Would Joyce Meyers bring me dinner??? NO. The body was the one area of the three that was the most important... it's the body that makes up the church!

Once we looked at what the church really is (a body of believers, not an entertainment committee) it was easy to find our home.

Already we have been blessed with godly relationships, personal spiritual growth, and a renewed love for church (remember my I hate church post?).

So once again I rejoice in answered prayers. Once I let go of my personal expectations and let God lead the way, I found true happiness in unexpected places.


javamamma said...

Not trying to be preachy....I would throw a number 4 into your list -a place where you can throw yourself into ministry on whatever level God would have you.

Not only will others bring you meals, you will have the opportunity to do the same! (maybe you can get rid of some of that dessert? :>) I know a busy homeschool mamma does not have much 'extra' time but I believe God would have all of us extending ourselves somewhere. Love ya, friend! And happy you found a place to call 'home'.

Cindy-Still His Girl said...

Yeah! I'm so thrilled for you.
"I was so glad when they said unto me, Let us go to the house of the Lord!" There is something so GLAD about it! :)

Chelle said...

I'm so happy for you guys! No church is ever perfect, even those that appear to be at first glance. I'm glad you found one that is in line with your values.

Have fun with the produce!

ConservaChick said...

I agree with you Javamamma. Serving is where I feel closest to God... it deserves a #4 spot! ~Karlie

Halfmoon Girl said...

Fantastic to hear you found a church. I agree that the number one priority is sticking to the Word! I have learned to worship just as well in our church, though I used to want worship to be more pumped up.

Apple pie is my favorite!

Anonymous said...

God is faithful! Blossom and grow in this new place where God is planting you. May this be a long and fruitful season.


Family O'Foxes said...

Congatulations to your daughter on her great meet. :)

My son is on the gymnastic team. This is his 3rd year (9 years old). It is very time consuming. I'm glad we homeschooling because he practices 5:30 to 8:30 pm (Mon thru Fri).