What do you look for in a worship service?  Are you the type that wants a cup of coffee in a more relaxed, casual setting with contemporary music and a band?  Or maybe you prefer a more traditional approach to worship that includes hymns of the faith in a more reverent atmosphere?  Do you prefer a large church or a small quaint gathering?

Whatever your personal preferences, I would encourage you to examine how your choice of a church affects your family’s values and priorities?  Do you have a vision or plan for building your child’s character and spiritual growth?  And how does the church you attend help you achieve those goals?

There are many questions we can ask and any seasoned believer knows no church is going to meet all of your needs.  So how do we prioritize the essentials?

Here are a few basic principles Dennis Rainey has shared that may be useful in helping you choose a church.

  1. Look for a church that is anchored in the authority of Scripture, regularly proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ and equipping you on how to live your daily life, your marriage, parenting and all the daily choices you make based on God’s Word.
  2. Be sure to check out the “power of the community”-authentic relationships within the body of Christ – the people who care for and encourage one another.
  3. Worship – the missing jewel in many churches. Jesus says in John 4:24 we are to worship in spirit and truth, which is a blending of God’s Word and the stirring of the soul. The style of worship is up to you.
  4. Look for opportunities to use your gifts. God has given every believer gifts to use for His glory for the benefit of all believers. (Romans 12:4-8) Does this church make the best use of the talents God has given you?
  5. Find a church that builds men. One that calls them to be real men, real husbands, real fathers. A church that builds patriarchs would help solve many of the problems women experience.

The church should be a place where you can develop a personal and intimate relationship with Jesus Christ – a place where people from diverse backgrounds can gather together to connect and grow together in hope of changing our world for Jesus Christ.