The title of this blog says exactly what I'll be talking about right now. I was moved to write this after I read "The Dilemma of the Unchurched Believer". I feel that this was a good blog because it expresses the writer's true feelings no matter what anyone else thinks.
My first reason for going to church as a kid was because my parents made me. Most Sundays, I didn't want to go and I would try to find any excuse not to go which would include lying about being sick, injured, or even losing clothes(yeah, it was that bad). But as a kid, I could only look forward to the time I was a grown up and I wouldn't have to go to church anymore.
Once I graduated high school and left home for college, my dad died. That event, plus oddly enough, reading The Autobiography of Malcolm X, I began to seriously doubt the presence and existence of God. That doubt grew to denial which led me to living on my own earthly beliefs.
A number of things renewed my belief and my faith in God. For starters, I have lived through a major car accident, I've lived through sickness, and there have been many situations in my life that I had no control over yet I made it through. While some might say doctors healed me, or I had luck on my side, I know enough to be able to say that there is no book or no person that can teach someone else how to perform miracles of healing. I can also say that luck has nothing to do with the trials I've made it through because if luck truly existed, everyone would have a rabbit's foot right now. So my renewed faith in God brought me back to church. It was incredulous to me that I actually wanted to go.
But that's not the end of it because at one time(this is around 2002), I stopped going to church. My church became divided over a preacher and I couldn't stand it. I got fed up with all of these people who claimed they loved God fussing and fighting like they do on VH1 reality shows. So I figured that I could still get my praise on with God at my house by watching the t.v. ministers. This kind of life didn't work for me for 2 reasons. First, I began to see that the less time I spent being around people who were working to be more God-like and the more time I spent being around people who didn't care about religion, the less attention I gave God. Second, I came to accept and understand that going to church was meant for me to get closer to God by learning about Him through His word, and not so I can get closer to another person.
There is no man alive that determines my success or my failure, and there is no man alive that determines my salvation or my damnation. I've learned that that is why I go to church to, "Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling." (Psalms 2:11) The journey I made to give my life to God is far from done, but it is my journey. I can't tell you who to serve, and neither can anyone else. But I will gladly tell you what He's done for me.