Visiting Churches

An Unknown Situation

Discussing Church 26

A friend tells us about a new African American church. Once again, we’ll be minorities at church.

The 52 Churches Workbook, by Peter DeHaan

Consider these four discussion questions about Church #26

1. We arrive ten minutes early and find only four people. At ten o’clock there’s just nine. A few more trickle in. Eventually the service begins. 

Is your starting time a guideline or reality? What message does this send?

2. Everyone is friendly, abounding in smiles. Despite having different-colored skin, we feel accepted. 

How can you better welcome people of different backgrounds at your church?

3. Throughout the service, the pastor declares blessings on us. His words are intentional and more fervent than I’ve ever witnessed. His passionate prayer proclaims favor, protection, and God’s grace. This isn’t a request but a declaration. I like his spiritual confidence. 

How can you pray with more boldness?

4. Afterward this African American church shares a meal. As Candy and I return to our chairs with our food, they congregate in groups. No one joins us or invites us to join them. I don’t think they’re being rude but merely gravitating toward their friends and those they’re comfortable with. 

What should you do to push past your comfort and reach out to include others?

[See the prior set of questions, the next set, or start at the beginning.]

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Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

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