To the person who feels unwelcomed by the Church,
Maybe you haven’t gone to church in ages or just came in for the first time. Maybe you are more of a CEO (Christmas, Easter only) Christian. It is also possible that you are here every Sunday, yet you still feel as though you are not accepted. If any or all of these are true do not feel as though you are less than because of your background. Do not feel as though you are unworthy because of what you have done. Everyone here is broken, everyone here is a sinner. We all make mistakes and we all are in need of forgiveness. While some may act like they have their whole life together, I promise you, they do not. So when you walk in, please do not pretend like your life is perfect. Be broken. Be hurt. You are welcomed just as you are. Some will judge, just like anywhere else, but I believe Christians as a whole do not want you to feel unwelcome and unloved. I am sorry for those who have made you feel that way.
Churches are imperfect because of the fallen people who are in them. No, I am not just talking about the local church down the road. This is about Christians around the globe. In fact, those people might be the reason you are so opposed to church and christianity. Maybe the Christians you have seen have been hateful bigots and hypocritical racists. This sampling of us is not how the whole believes or behaves. God is love and we want to emulate that love, not spread hate. Please find a place in your heart to forgive “church-people.”
Before you turn around and walk towards the door, maybe just sit in the back pew. True, service might not be as thrilling as a concert, but it sure beats sitting at home. The worship band may not be the greatest musicians, but they are striving to do their best. Just a forewarning - the pastor does not present like a TedTalk, his sermons are a little more rough around the edges, but give him a chance. Be patient and open. I hope you are shown kindness and acceptance here today. I pray that you will return to learn more about the joy and Love we know - that someone will come up to you and welcome you without judgment. Please don’t let the imperfect people of the church push you away from a perfect God.
Have you ever been shut out by the Church? What would have helped you feel more welcomed? Please let me know in the comments below.