What an encouraging article I just read....see below for link. I attend a great Presbyterian church here in Jackson. It is PCA. and they love Jesus and believe in the doctrines of grace. And, they also love eachother. Sounds great right?
But....they are known at Reformed Theological Seminary as the "charismatic reformed church" - with different music, a willingness to accept people that arent uber reformed,no pews, etc.
OMG NO PEWS?? after all, we are only 15 years old so we dont have pews and a formal chapel/sanctuary. Right now, the building we have built has a fellowship hall that doubles as the sanctuary with chairs that can be moved and a stained glass window and alter. But when the church began building, they decided to do so in phases and before a fancy chapel, there was a a bigger need to build classrooms and a fellowship hall. Because you can use a felloship hall for church but its hard to use a sanctuary for Wednesday supper. But what makes us a better church bc we have pews or dont?
YOU DONT SING ONLY HYMNS WITH ONLY AN ORGAN? tsk tsk....They also sing some praise songs (gasp). I love hymns, I love them more than praise songs but thats my taste. I think there are some praise songs that people can worship the Lord whole heartedly with. And I have learned a lot about community in learning that people who love the Lord and sincerely worship Him and agree with me can do so in a different way. I have been humbled as I have learned to enjoy praise songs too.I am called to worship my Savior, to glorify him (its in the westminster folks....)and I'm not given a pass to do it only the way I want, be it praise songs or hymns. I love that my church accomodates all types of tastes with god honoring music.
YOU ARENT ALL UBER CONSERVATIVE AND NEVER QUESTION ANYTHING? There are people in my church who buy into the typical PCA lifestyle...wife stays home, women should have no leadership roles, homeschool or christian school, westminster is just as important as the Bible, worship should be more formal, etc...and there are people who don't buy into that view as much..who dont love hymns, whose kids go to public school, who are reformed but know more about the Bible than they do about Calvin. I love the mix. I helps keep theology important while still keeping it in its place. This variety of beliefs is great. Christians can disagree and still love the same God.
We teach doctrine. But more importantly this church teaches the gospel. I basically didnt go to church last year unless I was home. It wasnt a welcoming church and I had some issues I needed to pray/work through...and although I did, I recognize my sin of not finding a church I could attend to stay in a body of believers. But point being when I was looking for a church here in Jackson visiting different reformed churches, what I longed to find (although I didnt know it at the time) was the gospel, was people who loved their Savior and were saved only through him. Singing the "right" music in the the "right" building with people who only believed certain things was not what I craved. I wanted the Lord, not John Calvin.
And I found it in a wonderful church that I joined last week :-)
Anyways my little rant all leads up to this article I read....how touching to know that others long to be a Christian more than they long to be "reformed"
PS here is the church I attend