One major part of my 2014 spiritual journey was the realization that “church hopping” is a bad idea and that God is calling me to lay down roots as part of a church community. It might seem weird, then, that one of my first posts of 2015 is to encourage visiting churches that are not your home church.
I am currently visiting Washington DC where I am taking a week-long class for MBA students called “Teaching Business Leaders How Washington Works”. I traveled in on Sunday just after normal church-going hours, which meant I to find one of the only churches around my hotel that offered a 5 pm service.
I ended up in an upstairs room of St. Thomas episcopal church with 8 other people (plus a female reverend and a pianist). At the church I grew up going to, if 8 people showed up, they would have canceled*. But the other church goers in this small upstairs room hardly noticed the meager attendance (or didn’t let on if they did).
I thoroughly enjoyed my experience at St. Thomas. It was the smallest service I’ve ever attended and the first time I’ve met a female reverend. Our sermon was on the wise men who followed a star to where God was leading them and how we can determine where Gods leading us (assuming he’s not sending us a star). Check out that sermon here.
Quality of worship is not determined by the number of participants. I am convinced God was just as pleased with this service of 10 people as with the worship at the super churches back in Texas last weekend.
Don’t hop from church to church to church every week. Don’t do it! But when you can’t be at your home church on Sunday, don’t skip! God may have something he wants you to see at a church you’ve never been to. Today I’m thanking God for St. Thomas Episcopal church in Dupont Circle, Washington DC.
*I don’t know that for sure but it’s probably true.