There have been several different seasons of my life where I have been a “church hopper.” There were the first months in a new town where my family bounced from church to church, trying to find what felt right for our family. There were my years in college, following friends to different campuses of different worship styles on Sunday mornings, trying to figure out where I felt most at home. There was the time I felt frustrated by the community I was in, and I visited other churches to see if it was really my church I was wrestling with, or maybe it was just my own self.
Many believers (especially millennials like myself) are church hoppers.
Noelle Hill recently shared “4 Lessons From a Serial Church Hopper” on Relevant, and she says she “discovered some important things.”
- “Church is about relationships.” It’s easy for us to think of church as just the physical building where worship services are held, but Jesus said in Matthew 18:20 that “ where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” Church is the people, not the place. “Simply hopping from service to service without connection does a true disservice to all that a church offers,” says Hill. “There is freedom, depth and life to be experienced when you throw yourself into a trusted, safe community.”
- “It will be exactly what you make it.” Sometimes, church hopping is a great idea. If my family had stayed at the first church we visited after moving to town, we wouldn’t have known what other communities were around us and wouldn’t have found the place and the people we ultimately all fell in love with at our church now. We made our church hopping an intentional search to find a church home where we could put down roots, and that’s exactly what happened. “Don’t let church-hopping slip through the cracks without really understanding why you do it,” warns Hill.