March 28, 2021

The Household of Faith #2, How to Leave a Church

Passage: I Timothy 3:14-15, Mark 4:30-32
Service Type:

I. Intro

  1. "I write these things to you, hoping to come to you soon. But if I should be delayed, I have written so that you will know how people ought (necessary) to act in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth." - 1 Timothy 3:14-15 HCSB
  2. Need a healthy respect for God’s Household
    1. Don’t treat common what is sacred
    2. Learn to honor what he honors and value what He values

II. God Plants Us in a Local Church

  1. Again he said, “What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it? It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest of all seeds on earth. Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.” - Mark 4:30-32 NIV
    1. God a master Gardner
    2. He knows the correct Soil, moisture, light, and fertilizer needed for each plant.
      1. Rose bush wouldn’t flourish in the desert.
      2. Cactus wouldn’t flourish in the rain forest.
    3. *Fertilizer stinks but when used, it nourishes and accelerates growth.
      1. Difficult People
      2. Difficult Problems
      3. Difficult Processes
  2. “The righteous will flourish like a palm tree, they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon; planted in the house of the Lord, they will flourish in the courts of our God. They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green,” - Psalms 92:12-14 NIV
    1. Some are placed but don’t allow themselves to be planted.
    2. Planting is…
      1. Commitment to the people and the processes of a local church.
      2. Consistency — Standing in good times and bad.
      3. Contribution - to the vision (serving and giving)
      4. Contentment - learning to be content where God’s placed you
      5. and serve in obscurity if necessary Household of Faith – How to Leave a Church
    3. Roots develop fruits
    4. We want the fruits but we must develop roots
    5. Fruits are seen
    6. Roots are unseen
    7. Fruits are celebrated
    8. Roots are significant

III. God Transplants Us - How to Leave a Church

  1. Two Guiding Scriptures:
    1. “You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.” —Isaiah 55:12 NIV
    2. “like an eagle that stirs up its nest and hovers over its young, that spreads its wings to catch them and carries them aloft. The Lord alone
      led him; no foreign god was with him.”
      -Deuteronomy 32:11-12 NIV
    3. Seem opposed but they are parallel guide rails
    4. God uses frustrations at times to stir us from our comfort zones but we should never leave on that basis alone.
    5. We must get the mind of Christ (inner peace and even joy) and be brutally honest with ourselves at the same time. Can be difficult!
  2. Practical Advice
    1. Pray and Fast
    2. Handle Conflict according to Matthew 18
    3. Evaluate by asking yourself questions
      1. Am I leaving prematurely?
      2. Am I leaving or being led?
      3. Unresolved Issues?
      4. What is my track record? (3 churches in 5 years? )
    4. If possible involve the leadership of the church and seek their blessing.
    5. At all times walk in honor
      1. Needed most in transitions!!!
      2. Story of Noah’s worst day
      3. Remember and highlight the good.
      4. Bless the leadership (write a letter of gratitude)
      5. Guard your tongue
        1. Speak well of the church
        2. Go quietly
    6. Allow time to find a new church 3-6 months
      1. Don’t wait
      2. Don’t make a deep commitment too soon
      3. Get to know the house
    7. Allow yourself to be adopted
  3. Conclusion

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