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Steven True
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Bonney Lake,WA
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Ok this may not be the place to post this but I wil present my question and see where it goes. I have been in a deep spiritual search lately for a new church home. I have been out of Church for a long time. I am looking to get back into a Christian Fellowship somewhere close to me. I have been feeling a real close call to Gods service in some way. I am still praying and waiting on God to reveal Himself to me. I use to attend a Nazarene church in the past but it has been a long time since I have attended, Actually the still had 2 services on Sunday, 1 in the morning and 1 in the evening and also had a Wednesday service if that helps any of you in realizing how long it has been for me to attend a service. Where should I look, and what type of church should I loos for. I am praying but I hope that some of you here will peay for and with me in my search. I hope a lot of this makes sense as I am typing at almost 1 am in the morning. I want to serve God in all ways possible..
Again I am sorry if this is not the place to post this. I am on a somewhat of a spiritual journey and want to end up in the right place. Thank you for your time and prayer.

In my humble Love

Steven True
Vlad_77
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Dear Steven,

A lost child of God trumps any rules or regulations of any site for God is above all. Each of us will provide different answers, but, what is important is not what church "we" or any individual believes you should attend, but that you are seeking and hearing Him call you.

I am going to very briefly talk a little about my church and provide three links that will give you a lot of information. Knowing your Nazarene background helps me to zero in on the information you need that most relates to you. Also, as far as I know, I am the only member of this particular church who posts semi-regularly in this section of the Magic Café.

I am a convert to the Eastern Orthodox Christian Church. We are perhaps better known in America as Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, etc. Our official name is The Holy Orthodox, Catholic, and Apostolic Church of the East. Don't let the "Catholic" part of the name confuse you; we are not in communion with the Roman Catholic Church. We are the second largest Christian body in the world with upwards of 400 million adherents. Most of our churches in the west outside of large cities - and even IN some large cities are small mission churches.

We hold to Holy Scriptures because the church as "catholic" decided what books of The Holy Bible are canon. We have no juridical head of the church on Earth. Christ is the head of the church, not any man or committee. We are highly liturgical in nature and our beliefs are handed down unerringly from Christ Himself to His Apostles and so on to the present day.

http://orthodoxinfo.com/general/orthodoxy.aspx

http://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/inq_allprots.aspx

http://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/inq_evangelicals.aspx

I will pray for you Steven; and your name is highly significant: St. Stephen (still the same name) was the very first Christian martyr. May the Lord guide you on your journey and make His face to shine upon you on your journey Home.

Remember that when we pray, sometimes it seems that God is not listening, but, rather that silence tells us that like a good parent, THAT is when He is listening most.

May God grant you long life and may you find your home in what is the true home of all of us: Christ our God together with His All Loving Father and Life Creating Holy Spirit.

Humbly yours in Christ,
Vlad

PS: There is a Café member and moderator here named Father Photius. If you have any questions about Orthodox Christianity, I am sure he will answer them. Also, please feel free to PM any of us here who answer your thread. We are all His children and we are called to serve, to help, and most of all, to follow in our Lord's example, and love.
ClintonMagus
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Steven, a pastor friend once said, "You should never pass a church on the way to church." What he meant was that it is important to become a vital part of your local Christian community and to serve where you are planted. That being said, my denomination is not nearly as critical to me as whether the church I am attending preaches Christ and Him crucified. I can attend a Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, Orthodox, or non-denominational. The music can be "classical" or contemporary. There can be instruments, no instruments, dancing, art, etc. in the service. The congregation can be old or young. As long as the pastor/preacher teaches from the Word and the other activities support the Message, then I can worship.

When you find a place where you feel comfortable, get to know the members and staff of the church. Find an area of service and "bloom".
Things are more like they are today than they've ever been before...
MagicBus
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I have a member of and attended so many churches over the years (in this order): Christian Reformed, Reformed Baptist, Bible (independent church- 2 of those), Reformed, Free Methodist, and now am a member of Lighthouse Community Church in Kalamazoo, Michigan (a Wesleyan congregation). My current wonderful home church has two services- the 9AM is "traditional" (e.g. hymns, etc.) and the 11:00AM is "contemporary" (e.g. a praise band). At both services, the Word of God is preached by our well prepared and passionate pastor who faithful to the Bible and practical in application. My wife and I early on recognized the friendliness of the folks there and the openness to allowing us to get quickly involved in ministry. ClintonMagnus has it very well stated above- find a church where you feel at home, where the Bible is taught, and where you know you can be used in meaningful service.
Steven True
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Bonney Lake,WA
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I want to thank you all for your encouraging words. I have let myself down by staying out of church for so long. I actually was in Bible College back in the 80' studying to become a pastor. I let my eyes and heart drift away from God and stumbled down a road of addiction and sin. I slowly realized what I was doing to myself and my family and found my way back to God. He never left me I left Him. I was involved in children's ministry and things were going quite good. There was an event in my life that really made me question God once more. It was a divorce, not of my choosing, and I let my mind take over again and blocked out any attempt at a true walk with God. I have recently been in prayer and reading the bible again and feeling God saying that, "I never left I have been here the whole time". I am now looking, as I have stated, for the right fellowship with others that are open and loving to someone that was broken but has had God's glue to put me back together. Every thing that you all have said is a real blessing and a great help in my search for a church home. I again thatnk you for your words and know that even here at the Café' one can find God.

Blessings to you all

Steven
Steven True
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Bonney Lake,WA
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I want to thank you all for your encouraging words. I have let myself down by staying out of church for so long. I actually was in Bible College back in the 80' studying to become a pastor. I let my eyes and heart drift away from God and stumbled down a road of addiction and sin. I slowly realized what I was doing to myself and my family and found my way back to God. He never left me I left Him. I was involved in children's ministry and things were going quite good. There was an event in my life that really made me question God once more. It was a divorce, not of my choosing, and I let my mind take over again and blocked out any attempt at a true walk with God. I have recently been in prayer and reading the bible again and feeling God saying that, "I never left I have been here the whole time". I am now looking, as I have stated, for the right fellowship with others that are open and loving to someone that was broken but has had God's glue to put me back together. Every thing that you all have said is a real blessing and a great help in my search for a church home. I again thatnk you for your words and know that even here at the Café' one can find God.

Blessings to you all

Steven
Vlad_77
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The Netherlands
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Dear Steven,

I like what you wrote about God never leaving us; it is so true. Here are two thoughts I'd like to share that have buttressed me through difficult times.

1. One Sunday, our priest was talking about what it means to be "human." At first, this homily seemed rather strange, but, the Truth Father Paul spoke struck me like a thunderbolt; you could call it a Saul to St. Paul moment. Father explained that we are most human when we are with God; when He is in our hearts. We are separated from our humanity when we turn from God. One of the great gifts of our Loving God is free will because free will is one of the cores of our humanity. WE choose our actions and in doing so, we choose to be human. I watched a powerful film recently titled God On Trial. It is based on a true account of inmates at Auschwitz-Birkenau who put God on trial to decide whether ultimately He had abandoned His people and thus "allowed" the Holocaust. I do not want to spoil the ending. I would encourage you to watch this powerful film and pay special attention to its very human ending.

2. In our prayers at Divine Liturgy, we pray these words before receiving Holy Communion: "And like the thief will I confess thee." We know that Christ our True God promised the theif that on that day, the thief would be with Him in Paradise. You have confessed Him in your post Steven! And you know that He has never left you. Your journey Home is already significant. That said, the monks of Mt. Athos have a wonderful saying that coincides with Scripture which states that we work out our salvation "with fear and trembling." The monks say, "we walk, we stumble and fall, and we get up and walk again." We all stumble my brother, but we have the choice to stand again. The way IS narrow and rocky, but, as we know, the cloud of witnesses is cheering us on to finish the race: "So a great cloud of witnesses who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens. Women received their dead raised to life again. And others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. Still others had trial of mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented– of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth. And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us. Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." (Heb 11:33-12:2)

Your brother in Christ,
Vlad
RobFromNZ
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As a pastor I would say you do indeed need to find a good local church. God made us to meet with, and serve, other Christians. "Church" was his idea!

I think it's a trend now to say denominations don't matter. But let's be honest, if you're convinced (from the Bible) that certain church structures and doctrines are a better reflection of the Bible's teaching than others, it makes sense to favour some denominations over others.

I'd say, consider it this way: what are the most important things the Bible says about the church. What are the top 10 things a church MUST believe? What are the top 5 things a church MUST do? Then go looking close by.

No church will be perfect, but there must be some non-negotiables that you're looking for. Be honest about that.

And finally, get on with it. You haven't been in ages. Fine. Start again. God requires faithfulness today, and offers forgiveness through Christ for yesterday. He offers everyone a fresh start.
Theodore Lawton
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Hey Steven,

Glad to hear that God is calling you back to a deeper relationship with Him again. You've already been given lots of good advice here, but I would like to quote and second RobFromNZ here when he says, "I'd say, consider it this way: what are the most important things the Bible says about the church. What are the top 10 things a church MUST believe? What are the top 5 things a church MUST do? Then go looking close by.

No church will be perfect, but there must be some non-negotiables that you're looking for. Be honest about that.

And finally, get on with it. You haven't been in ages. Fine. Start again. God requires faithfulness today, and offers forgiveness through Christ for yesterday. He offers everyone a fresh start."

Great advice there and I looked at a map of churches in your area, there looks like several to start checking out. I don't know where exactly you are in Puyallup, but it can't hurt to give South Hill Calvary Chapel a try. I've attended a Calvary Chapel here in Tucson for several years and can say that they meet the previous requirements discussed above.

I say this only as a practical suggestion, of course. I'm in no way interested in boosting the attendance of Calvary Chapels, but I have been where you're at in looking for a church home and I would have appreciated some actual, "Why don't you try here," suggestions when I was looking.

Wherever you decide to worship and serve may:

"The Lord bless you and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;
The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.”’

Numbers 6:24-26

Ted-
Magic is the bacon in the breakfast of life.

............................................

God bless you and have a magical day
CarlEJones
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Great advice in this thread!!
Russo
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I"m having the same(?) problem - all Churches(?) within 15 miles are SLAM BANG BOOM ROCkAGOSPEL so loud have to walk out or go to an 8am service-meaning we have to get up at 6am to get ready and travel. At 76 its a bit much. So there is a few good TV services and enjoy the Gospel Forums( where there is 2 or more our LORD is with us.) Ralph
Mike Maturen
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Steven,

I will not proselytize here. Only to say that I am a Catholic and (of course) really love and appreciate my faith. If you would like to discuss more about what we believe and how we worship, please feel free to contact me privately.

I will hold you up in prayer as you seek God's will in this.

In Jesus Master,

Mike Maturen
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Mike Maturen
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Steven,

I will not proselytize here. Only to say that I am a Catholic and (of course) really love and appreciate my faith. If you would like to discuss more about what we believe and how we worship, please feel free to contact me privately.

I will hold you up in prayer as you seek God's will in this.

In Jesus Master,

Mike Maturen
Mike Maturen
World of Wonder Entertainment
The Magic and Mayhem of Mike Maturen
989-335-1661
mikematuren@gmail.com

AUTHOR OF "A NEW DAWN--Weekly Wisdom From Everyday Life"

member: International Magician's Society
ClintonMagus
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Quote:
On 2013-09-23 11:58, Russo wrote:
I"m having the same(?) problem - all Churches(?) within 15 miles are SLAM BANG BOOM ROCkAGOSPEL so loud have to walk out or go to an 8am service-meaning we have to get up at 6am to get ready and travel. At 76 its a bit much. So there is a few good TV services and enjoy the Gospel Forums( where there is 2 or more our LORD is with us.) Ralph


I am not so much into the "rock church genre", but I can still appreciate that they are meeting the needs of their members and are trying to minister to the field the Lord has presented to them. Two Sundays ago, I was fortunate to attend Mosaic in Hollywood, CA. The ministry they provide is INCREDIBLE. They identify the needs of those around them, and then meet them, regardless of how dirty or uncomfortable or objectionable they may seem. The music may not be something that I would prefer, but they are being rewarded for their commitment and faithfulness.
Things are more like they are today than they've ever been before...
MagicBus
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There are still many "traditional" churches alive and well. Calvary Bible Church in Kalamazoo, is one of them (I used to be an Elder there years ago). Their former Pastor, Dr. John Munro, is now senior pastor of Calvary Church in Charlotte, NC which has one of the largest pipe organs in the world. Dr. Munro also this month became lead speaker on the http://www.BackToTheBible.org radio broadcast. When I first met him in Kalamazoo (I picked him up at the airport at his first visit here)- we had much to talk about as Pastor John also was a former practicing attorney in Scotland. So he "gave up law for grace." Smile I love listening to the "Moody Church Hour" online from Moody Church in Chicago- the music is a blend of the new and the old- followed by good messages by Erwin Lutzer. http://www.MoodyChurch.org
Vlad_77
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Just to add to MagicBus's post, indeed there are many traditional churches alive and very well. Some of the churches in fact are so traditional, they are literally ancient.

Remember brother that you are seeking which brings you Home already. You are in my prayers regardless of what temple you enter. Smile

+Humbly in Christ,
Vlad
Steven True
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Bonney Lake,WA
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Thank you all for your posts and advice. I have had a hard time getting back on here due to a loss of internet at my home. I use the library near my home for now so please don't feel like I abandoned the thread. I really see the love of Christ through the posts here and it is helping me in my search for a new home Church. Please keep praying for me as I will keep praying for everyone here.

In Christ

Steven True
Steven True
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Bonney Lake,WA
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Thank you all for your posts and advice. I have had a hard time getting back on here due to a loss of internet at my home. I use the library near my home for now so please don't feel like I abandoned the thread. I really see the love of Christ through the posts here and it is helping me in my search for a new home Church. Please keep praying for me as I will keep praying for everyone here.

In Christ

Steven True
Steven True
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Bonney Lake,WA
765 Posts

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Thank you all for your posts and advice. I have had a hard time getting back on here due to a loss of internet at my home. I use the library near my home for now so please don't feel like I abandoned the thread. I really see the love of Christ through the posts here and it is helping me in my search for a new home Church. Please keep praying for me as I will keep praying for everyone here.

In Christ

Steven True
Steven True
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Bonney Lake,WA
765 Posts

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Thank you all for your posts and advice. I have had a hard time getting back on here due to a loss of internet at my home. I use the library near my home for now so please don't feel like I abandoned the thread. I really see the love of Christ through the posts here and it is helping me in my search for a new home Church. Please keep praying for me as I will keep praying for everyone here.

In Christ

Steven True
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