Whether attending church regularly, periodically or no longer attending at all, many Christians are coming to the conclusion that "church" can be spiritually unhealthy...breeding religion rather than helping people experience a growing and authentic relationship with Jesus and others.
People are turned off by church for various reasons. Can you relate to any of the following?
* A lack of community- you've attended church for years but have little to no relational connection with others.
* Were told that the answer to developing authentic relationships was to join a small group, only to find that the small group was structured similar to a church service, with little interaction or member participation.
* Church services are more of a performance rather than an authentic spiritual expression.
* Tired of being lectured in a one-way communication environment.
* A legalistic, performance based environment rather than a Christ-centered, grace based environment.
* You experienced or witnessed some form of spiritual abuse.
* Judgmental attitudes on peripheral things such as dress, tattoos, alcohol, entertainment, etc.
* Difficult questions and divergent ideas are suppressed and seen as a threat to leadership.
* An inordinate focus on sin, with minimal focus on New Covenant realities (i.e. our identity in Christ, the preeminence of Jesus, walking by the Spirit, etc...).
* A lack of sensitivity to the Holy Spirit.
* A lack of love expressed, especially toward those who aren't Christians.
* Manipulative teaching on money and poor stewardship of it. Investing in the institution rather than people.
* Were marginalized because of divorce.
If you're a Christian who isn't into the church scene, or becoming increasingly weary of it, this group can help you connect with others in the same boat. Whether it be a social get-together, an outdoor activity, a volunteer opportunity, or an open discussion on a portion of scripture at a local coffee shop or pub, we can all have the opportunity to express our thoughts, grow in our faith, encourage each other in our walk with Christ, develop authentic relationships, and have fun in the process! This is not a group of "church-bashers" but a group of people who, based on their own unique experiences, have decided or at least considered the possibility that there are more fruitful places for them to be than church.