Sunday, September 5, 2010


So, we are settled in our new home, kids have started school, I am once again seeing patients, and evenings are spent at soccer practice. So, after four years of living in the “buckle of the Bible belt,” my next priority was finding a church.

Week One, we tried out a traditional Methodist church. We had been attending a great Methodist church in Texas, a place of much support to the kids and me before, during and after my deployment to Afghanistan, so that seemed the most logical place to start. It was not a good fit. It was an odd mix of traditional and contemporary. I just didn't leave with that “this is it” feeling.

Week Two, on a whim, I tried out a newly planted Lutheran church that meets in a movie theater a mile from our house. I was a bit nervous, wondering how on earth a movie theater could be turned into a house of God, but I really enjoyed it. The people were few in number—maybe 50 adults—but so welcoming. I was hugged, my name was remembered and several offers were made to assist with my move-in chores. The next week, we went back. The kids really enjoyed it, too although, in their case, it may have been the donuts and just the overall “wow, we are in a movie theater for church” glow. So, although the people were great, the church body is small and there are not very many choices for children or adult Bible studies.

Which brings me to the third try. The kids and I attended a nearby, HUGE nondenominational church this morning. There was a drummer, singers, a couple electric guitars and, I am pretty sure, a spotlight or two lit up the stage. Yes, it was a stage—not a pulpit! I just didn't get that “warm fuzzy.” It was too big, too catchy and too much glitter, without enough mention of God or His Word.

I find it interesting that, with a simple mouse click or two, I managed to find three such very different churches: one very traditional where we could just roll in every week, attend some classes and maybe not be missed if we skipped a couple weeks; one very contemporary where there is a TON of program offerings but I would have to work hard to find a niche and not just be a number on the attendance register each week; and one that is small but friendly, an oasis in a big town.

A friend and I had a good chuckle—she was completely put off by the thought of attending church where she might be missed, where the pastor knows her by name and even (gasp!) contacts her the next day to say thanks for coming! But, for me it felt "just right," a little like Goldilocks!!

For Reflections on Nursing Leadership (RNL), published by the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International.

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