When you have a bad experience at a restaurant is it typically your normal thing to never go back? Or another situation, lets say you have a favorite restaurant and you order something different but it tastes horrible. Will THAT keep you from going back or ever eating again period? We may be disgusted by the service or by the meal but that doesn’t stop us from eating altogether. The experience itself doesn’t keep us home starving.
This type of scenario was brought up by a teacher in our Church who related this to church. And it makes total sense!
Have you ever had a bad experience at a church? Maybe no one was friendly to you, the music wasn’t on your terms, or the preaching wasn’t satisfying? Most of the time when people have that kind of bad experience, they write off church altogether and use it as their excuse to never go back. Just like a bad restaurant shouldn’t keep you from ever eating again physically, a bad church experience shouldn’t stop you from finding spiritual nourishment elsewhere.
I have heard many, many times of how non-Christians will not become a christian or go to church because of a bad testimony of another christian or a bad experience in a church. It is a sad thing to be said about us that claim “Christ” to have a bad testimony of Christ Himself. The point to push others away because of how we act, is the total opposite of Who Jesus is! Jesus drew in crowds and many after learning of His teachings made up their choice to leave or to follow. But the point is He was friendly and compassionate and also stood for truth in love. We have to remember that we follow “Jesus” not “each other” because we are human and are still sinners. So to say “Well that Christian does ‘such and such’ I am never going to be a Christian.” is just an excuse for you.
When people talk, walk, or see you do they see Jesus in you? That was a hard question to chew on myself. We are to reflect the light of Jesus to this world. It is so easy to have opinions about situations, get “offended” by petty things, or even start up gossip. But I have to continue to remember that people are watching me, and if my life is the only “Jesus” someone ever sees, I am held accountable for that. If you are being public with your faith (bumper stickers, shirts, etc) then please do the testimony of Jesus a favor and remember your manners.
I hope if you have ever had a bad experience with another “christian” or church, that they will not stop you in seeking the One True God that loves you so incredibly much! He is Who we need to compare ourselves to and not each other. Once you taste and see how good God is, nothing else can ever satisfy that spiritual hunger.
“O taste and see that the Lord is good.” Psalm 34:8