8. Church Life

Question and answer: "Going to church sounds scary. What does it involve?"

Church buildings can seem daunting, especially if you have never entered one before, but there is nothing to worry about. Just turn up when the service starts and go with the flow. Afterwards try and mingle with the crowd and introduce yourself to some people; you'll be amazed at whom you can meet, and it's good to have fellowship with like-minded people.

Psalm 122:1 'I was glad when they said to me let us go to the house of the Lord'.

Fact: The word 'church' in the Greek means a group or body of people, whereas in English, we refer to a church as the building.

Church buildings come in various shapes and sizes. Some Christians meet in halls, at home, and in some countries football stadiums! Church meetings vary; sometimes a service is one hour long, whereas in another church they could worship for more than one hour and then somebody will teach from the Bible. Each has its own particular style.

Wisdom: If you take a piece of charcoal out of a BBQ and place it on its own, it will soon grow cold and die out. That is one reason why we go to church - to be with people who can help and encourage us in the faith. 'Faith comes by hearing and hearing the word of God' Romans 10:17.

Churches often have denominational names like Elim, Baptist, URC, Church of England etc. Don't worry too much about the name, just make sure they believe the Bible and are open to the Holy Spirit's inspiration.

Think: When I go to church, am I willing for God to speak to me?

Often churches have meetings in the week, like a Bible study, prayer meeting, youth group etc. Find out what's on and give them a try. A live church often changes the way things are done - to do them better. Ask God to lead you to a church that is right for you and start attending!

Fact: The church is described as a body - teaching us that every member is important, because they have a role to play Romans 12:4-8, 1 Corinthians 12:4-31.

More Info: Psalm 27:4, 84, Ecclesiastes 5:1, Matthew 18:20, John 17:6-26, 1 Corinthians 3:9, Ephesians 1:20-23, 2:19-22, 4:11-13, 5:25, Hebrew 10:25, 13:20, Revelation 7:9.

Visit the interactive version of this course online. www.byfaith.co.uk 2003 ByFaith Media.