Why being part of a Church Family is one of the Biggest Blessings in my Life

why you need a church family

 

You know what? I want to start this post by being brutally honest. I am the first to admit that sometimes it’s really hard to feel motivated to go to church.

We work all week, spend Saturday doing stuff around the house to catch up on things, and Sunday I’m looking forward to a day of rest. The thought of spending my Sunday morning getting the family out the door on time can be daunting. Moms, I know you know what I’m talking about.

Getting the kids out the door fully dressed, with brushed teeth, brushed hair, and SHOES (why does no one ever know where their second shoe is????) is not my idea of rest. I mean, some mornings it’s basically like going to war.

And staying in my cozy pajamas sounds really inviting. Maybe even sleeping in an hour or two. (Haha, that’s a good one. I have kids, there’s no sleeping in here.)

Combine that with the fact that I am quite introverted and am very happy to stay at home with my family, my animals, my garden, and my fresh baked bread (because, I mean, have you smelled bread as it bakes?  What more do you need??).

But if I didn’t go to battle getting the family out the door and trying to do something decent and acceptable with my mom hair, I would miss the blessings I experience every Sunday that I sit in that church pew. (okay, it’s not a pew – our church has chairs – but you know what I mean. :))

You see, my church family is one of the greatest blessings in my life. They are my safe place.  My “village” so to speak.  They are what home feels like to me.  They are there when I rise and when I fall.   

Having a church family literally changes people. It helps people not feel so alone. They are a vessel through which we experience God’s love.  They can be a soft place to land during a hard time in your life and a place of celebration during the good times.

What does my church family mean to me?  Well, It’s been a long journey for me to really understand the family you can gain in being part of a church, but I’m finally there. And today I want to share with you why I think a church family is SO important, and the things I’ve learned when it comes to being part of that family.

WHAT BEING PART OF A CHURCH FAMILY CAN DO IN YOUR LIFE

They point you to God.

When my anxieties get out of control, when fear takes over, when life feels uncertain it always feels worse and insurmountable when I take my eyes off of God.  Church families have a way of pointing you back to where you can find peace.  Sometimes we need an outside voice to show us where to look when we forget.

Sometimes just watching them points us back to where we need to be.  This past Sunday as we sang one of the worship songs I found myself overwhelmed (in a good way) by the congregation singing.  At one point I looked over to see an elderly person in my church in pure, utter joy as they sang to God, even in the midst of a great trial they are walking through.  I’m not gonna lie, I shed a tear or two.

They help you emotionally get through the rough times.

Life is tough. We all have trials. We all have pain. I really believe we were not meant to carry that pain alone. Aside from the fact that we have God there to help us through it, I believe He puts people in our life to help us during those low times.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had members of my church family encourage and uplift me, and give me wise advice when I was struggling. There were moments, especially in the past year when I struggled with my health and a few other trials that I felt so discouraged. But I would often have church family check in on me, see how I was doing and let me know they were praying for me. There were many times we’d connect over coffee, and those moments were lifegiving for me as I struggled with the trials I was going through.  They often had words of wisdom that would help when I wasn’t doing so well.

They often practically help you get through the tough times too.

Not only was my church family praying for me and connecting with me to encourage me, but they were often helping us practically. When I had appointments they would watch my kids, when my husband hurt himself this past summer and was unable to do all that we needed to do they were here at our house cutting wood so we had enough to heat our home this winter, and they just filled in the gaps when needed. I was literally brought to tears by their kindness and generosity. Church families have a way of being there during your toughest moments.

We learn from a variety of ages when connected to a church family.

There are women in my church that have lived a lot longer than me that carry so much wisdom.  We recently had two of them share their words of wisdom at a women’s event at our church.  The lifetime of experiences they carry are ones us from the younger generation can learn so much from.

BUT – we can also learn from those younger than us too!  I am always in awe at the way those in their twenties at my church are so balanced, love God, and are kind and caring.  And then I can even learn from those even younger.  Kids have a way of teaching you a lot.

They challenge me to become a better person, and to grow closer to God.

We all need someone in our life that encourages us to be a better person. This doesn’t mean someone is coming at you saying, β€œhey, you need to change this flaw.” No, I’ve discovered that church families often challenge us to become better people in other ways. Meeting together for a Bible study, leading by example, and finding little ways of stretching you in your growth without you even really knowing it.

They see your flaws and love you anyways.

We’re all imperfect, aren’t we? But can I tell you a secret? We’ve been at our church for three years and while I’ve spent the full three years getting to know others, it wasn’t until recently that I was really willing to let some of my walls come down. I had baggage (I mean, we all have baggage whether we admit it or not so that’s why I’m totally cool with announcing this on the internet :)) and I was convinced that once they saw my flaws they wouldn’t stick around in my life.

And while that DOES happen with some people, chances are you can find a church family who is in it for the long haul with you, flaws and all, just like you will learn to love them with all their flaws as well.

They love on your children.

This has been absolutely one of my favorite parts of being part of a church family. My church family just loves on my kids so much it makes me pretty emotional every time I talk about it. From the sunday school teachers that pour into my children, not just teaching them but loving them, to the College and Career 20-somethings who let my kids hang off of them on Sundays, to others who let my kids sit with them in church.

Not to mention these same people connecting with my kids and teaching them again at our weekly kids club meeting. I never worry about my kids when they are surrounded by so many that love them deeply. There are few things that provide comfort to a mother’s heart(especially an anxious mother’s heart) like that kind of love and care on your children.

They celebrate with you.

I have always said, those who really, truly love you and want what’s best for you are the ones who celebrate with you.  They cheer you on.  They get excited about what’s going on in your life.  Church families have an amazing way of doing this.  I’ve watched church families celebrate the big things, like throwing baby showers, wedding showers, or big  milestone birthday parties, but I’ve also experienced them be excited for the little things too.

We’ve experienced this in our own life when our church family were interested in things like our daughter performing in a play, my husband finishing his tradesman training, and even being excited for us to be mostly done our year long kitchen reno.  I mean, a kitchen reno!  That’s totally not a big deal, yet those who care about us have shown so much excitement for us.

They remind you what it’s really about.

I see the people at my church serve so willingly, with joy, and without the focus on themselves. And it encourages me to do the same. While the season of life we are in will partially dictate how much we can serve in the church, watching them sets the foundation of what we will do in the future when we have more of ourselves to give.

They understand that being part of a church family means sometimes there’s tension.

Let’s be real honest – churches are made up of people and ALL people make mistakes from time to time.  That means that if you are part of a church family, chances are pretty good that you’ll hurt each other at some point.  You will be on the receiving end of hurt, and whether you want to admit it or not, you WILL be the one who causes hurt from time to time.  But, many church families understand that.  They get that tensions will arise.  There are times we need to make amends.  There are other times we need to let things go. But can I be honest with you?  There is nothing more freeing than knowing you made a mistake, yet they forgive you and love you still just as much as they did before you messed up.  And it works the other way too.  There is a security in knowing that if you were on the receiving end of hurt that you can both move past it because of how much you love and care about each other.

*disclaimer:  I do want to say this is not to say that there are things that run deeper than what the above paragraph is talking about. This is not referring to things like abuse, bullying, or other issues like that that can sometimes happen in a church (or anywhere, really).  If you are ever in a situation like that I encourage you to seek counsel from a professional or someone you trust.

YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO LIFE ALONE WHEN YOU ARE PART OF A CHURCH FAMILY

Sure, I’m sure I could get by in life without a church family, but I can say with 100% certainty that it would be much more difficult, and much more lonely.  To know that you have a place in this world, with people who genuinely care about you is life-changing.    My only hope is that one day I could give back at least a fraction of what my church family has done for me on so many levels.

If you are looking for your own place in this world, could you possibly find it in a church pew? (Or in many cases now, a church chair as pews are not as common anymore. πŸ˜‰ ).

6 thoughts on “Why being part of a Church Family is one of the Biggest Blessings in my Life”

  1. Loved your article. As a pastor our church has had online services since the middle of March. We will be coming together for outdoor services beginning in June. Your thoughts perfectly mess with what I am wanting to share. Thank you for your faith, transparency and insights! I will certainly pass on your website. God bless you!
    Jimmy Culpepper

    1. That’s exciting that your church can come together in June. We are still waiting and a long way off I think. I definitely miss my church family! Thanks for visiting the blog. πŸ™‚

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