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Christianity and church attendance?
Good morning all and Happy Easter! I apologize for the length of this in advance, I have a lot on my mind.
Now why am I asking a Christianity question on an Easter Sunday instead of being at church? Because right after this I have three papers to write that are due tomorrow so it’s a bit of a time thing (and due to stuff I mention in this question). And no, it’s not procrastination that has kept my papers to today. This past week was “hell week” at my university, meaning EVERY SINGLE DAY I had a paper or test or presentation. I barely had time to even sleep.
At any rate, I know I probably won’t get many answers to this until afternoon or tomorrow, but this has really been on my mind lately and I feel that I need to ask this.
It’s been quite some time since I’ve last been to church. I believe in Christ and I talk to God, but I haven’t set foot in the actual building in a long time. I think at this stage in my life (being in college, a very hard one at that) church has felt more like a lecture than me actually feeling involved and a part of what the pastor is saying. I go to school every day and sit in lectures that are hours long all the time. Not by choice, but because attendance is required and if I don’t go I will obviously flunk out of school. Is this the same policy with church? Will I not get into Heaven just because I don’t go to church on Sundays?
It’s just that, since I get lectured so much during the week, I like taking the time out on Sundays (normally) to sit in peace. During this time, I wash my hair, do whatever homework now, study, and meditate. My Sundays are very peaceful, and even my boyfriend gets upset sometimes because I don’t text/call him much on Sundays. This in itself is always a day of relief for me; because the rest of my week is usually very hectic.
The lectures I have received in church also tend to follow the same pattern. They pick a verse, make a somewhat modern story about it, repeat things a lot, and basically make an hour long message about a meaning of the verse that I easily saw and could understand in significantly less time. And not only that, but there is the gossip. I hear it from my grandparents all the time; it seems like people are more concerned with what others are wearing, or how often they go, what activities are they involved in, how much recognition and “church power” they have, etc. There is a lot of judgmental behavior and talking behind each others backs. It’s like everyone there “knows” you, even if it isn’t the “real” you and you have to smile in people’s faces and kind of act fake…....at least that’s how it is at my church. These are the same people that say they are holy, but then use my grandmother and cause her many many hours of stress and labor on bulletin boards for thirty years with their only thank you being a tiny mention in the church bulletin. Yet they constantly ask for more more more, ignoring the amount of work it puts on her and the fact that she does have a life and schedule outside of doing boards for the church.
That is not to say that the church does not have good people or serve a purpose. I know it does. And this does not mean that I think I’m a “self serving” Christian, one that knows all the answers and can figure out everything on my own without the support of other Christians. I know I have questions, but it seems like going to church on Sundays never really has given me the answers I desire. I only feel like I’m being talked to, when I need someone or some people to talk with. I feel like I would be better served by a Bible study or something; a place where I can read and actually DISCUSS my thoughts and ask questions. Yet I can’t really do this in a church without going on Sundays and being judged can I? There is a group at my college that has these discussions, but I do not like the group. I went; but their the type of Christians that believe even hugging and kissing in a relationship outside marriage is wrong. Different intensity of belief and interpretation of the Word I guess. They’re a little extreme lol. I want SOMETHING, but I’m just not sure what.
So it all comes down to this (and I apologize for the long long read), but does this make me a bad Christian? Am I wrong for not finding solace in Sunday worship (lecture)? I feel bad because I definitely think I should improve my relationship with God and study the Word more, but I’m having trouble finding a place where I can do that. I really need a Bible study lol. Maybe my thoughts on Sundays will change once I graduate since I won’t be getting lectured anymore? Maybe the approach won’t feel so horrible when I’m not getting it every other day of the week I don’t know…..