That would be how long should someone attend a church before deciding to commit to covenant membership?
Good question. And a pertinent one for the twenty or more folks currently working their way through the latest edition of Discover OGC.
I came across this post by Brian Croft on his blog Practical Shepherding. He asks some other strategic questions that ought to come into play in determining the answer to the timing question. These include:
- Is this a church where my family will be regularly fed by God’s Word?
- Is this a church where I am convinced the care of my soul will be a priority?
- Is this a church where my family will experience meaningful Christian fellowship and accountability?
- Is this a church where I can serve God’s people and use my gifts for its benefit?
He concludes most wisely, I think, with this:
There is one essential element that must exist in this process. It is the key to possessing the zeal required in this search. That is, a constant feeling of uneasiness that should exist in you knowing you and your family are not in covenant fellowship with a local church and are not under the authority of undershepherds caring for your souls. The freedom and absence of accountability many experience in the search for a new church can cause a sinful complacency. In other words, you do not ever want to become comfortable being one of God’s sheep who has wandered away from the fellowship of the flock and the accountability of shepherds to care for you, even if that journey at the time feels fun and exciting.
To read the entire post click here.
Pray with me that the folks investigating our church at the present time will know from the Lord the answer to these and 0ther crucial questions in their church for a church home.