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Some benefits of attending church
I first started attending church in June 1989. Before then I had only been to church for the occasional wedding or baptism. I can remember feeling nervous and not knowing what to expect next. I have found a number of blessings that have resulted in attending church. In this article I want to share some of those great blessings.
1. Positive Input
One of the great things about attending church is the positive and encouraging sermons I have heard. In the last 20 or so years I have heard a sermon on almost every subject! As a result of this I find that I have a better understanding of myself, on how to treat others and how to manage different areas of my life. Each message has blessed me in some way and added to my life.
The positive input has not just been on a Sunday morning at church. It has been as I have attended home groups during the week, church conferences and even while sitting with a friend over coffee. I have been really blessed by having a group of people around me who have encouraged me and speak into my life.
2. Support network
In years gone by people lived in more of a community environment. It was common for several generations of one family to live in the same street or even on the same property. This helped greatly when support was needed as there was usually someone close at hand. These days as our society has become more fragmented and separated it is good to know that a support exists within our local church.
Several years ago my wife Larissa had major surgery on her hip, it was great to have our families and our church family there as a support network we could look to for help. We had people who prepared meals for several weeks, people offering to help with cleaning the house and looking after our kids. I really don't know how we would have survived without that support network!
3. Find God's love
For years I wandered through life feeling like there was something missing and I felt like things didn't quite fit. Although I didn't know what this "missing" thing was, I knew there was something more to this life. I think this was a key in me attending church for the first time.
When I started attending church I found there was a God who loved me and He wanted to be a part of my life. Understanding this changed my life for the better and dramatically changed the way I view myself and others. It took me from someone with no hope or purpose to someone who sees a bright future and has a sense of destiny. The key part of finding God's great love for me is that I didn't know about it until I started attending church!
4. Learn more about God
Once I found God's love I was keen to learn as much as I could about God and my new faith. Being part of a local church really helped me in this learning process. I was able to learn from people who studied the Bible for years and listen to great preaching that really explained the messages of the Bible in a practical way that I could use in my everyday life.
I also found that by being part of my local church I was able to attend a mid week Bible study. This helped me greatly to be able to ask questions and bounce ideas off people who knew more about the Christian faith. Being part of this smaller group of 5 to 10 people really helped me to ask my questions in a relaxed environment.
If you don't attend church regularly or you haven't been for a while, I would encourage you to attend your local church or house church this Sunday. I believe that you will be blessed and you may just find that church really is the best place to be on a Sunday morning. I know I did!
By Dave Quinn
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