After 12 years in the church of my dreams, longer than this military brat has ever stayed anywhere, I'll soon begin the search for a new one in a new town.
I want a church that takes Scripture as seriously as I do. On those issues in which the Bible speaks clearly, unambiguously, I want a church that will take a dogmatic stance despite cultural tides. I've got low tolerance for flakiness.
What is hard to find is a church that takes a firm stance on the unquestionables without taking a dogmatic stance on those issues in which Scripture leaves room for disagreement.
Seriously, there are some ministers who, if asked, could come up with a 45-minute sermon on what the Bible has to say about wearing purple (or where my child should sleep). I guess that's better than the response of the typical mainline Protestant minister these days, who might say something like, "Purple. What is purple? The answer is different for everyone." But neither answer satisfies me. I want a minister who will send me to Romans 14.
I don't care what people wear, who goes there (well, believers would be good), how many people go there (though my husband wants small), or whether there are guitars or an organ. I do want a Sunday service that includes Scripture readings, a creed, intercessory prayer, confession, substantive lyrics in its praise, and a sermon.
Really, the best fit for us is Anglican, but the only one close to us will be 30 minutes away.
I don't know where we'll end up. But I'm confident God has something good in store. From the first time I prayed about leaving this city, I have prayed that God would send us to the place where we will best worship Him.