Most people don’t go to church.
If you ask any of them why they don’t, they can give you a litany of reasons. Some folks just aren’t interested in church events or feel uncomfortable with the decorum church services often involve. Some have belief systems that don’t involve a church or don’t find that traditional worship services meet their personal, spiritual, or emotional needs. Still, others feel as though the Judeo-Christian God is evil or nonexistent, and those are beliefs we can explore in depth at a later time.
Many times when we encounter someone who has stopped going to church, they have stories of horrific things a pastor or leader or parent has done that has turned them off to the idea of church on any level. Perhaps you yourself identify with some of these reasons, and that’s fine. See, God doesn’t go to church either.
Now, of course, we could say that God is ‘everywhere’ and therefore, by definition doesn’t ‘go’ anywhere, but maybe we should check with God as to where he goes.
Matthew 18:20 says that “where two or three gather together in My name, there am I with them.” which teaches us that God shows up anywhere where he is the basis for meeting. Luke 17:20-21 says “The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.”
Now we could argue whether or not the original word means inside you personally or inside your group, but this distinction is beside the point. We see this idea over and over again in the Bible, God is with us. Jesus is even called Immanuel, which means exactly that, “God with us”. Perhaps you’ve heard Revelation 3:20 before: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him and will dine with him, and he with Me.”
Over and over again, Jesus makes the point that God doesn’t go to church… God goes to people. People like you. People like me. That is his interest, his focus, and his mission. Jesus, our example, never went to church to meet God. If anything he took God to church with him! After all, God doesn’t like it when church leaders lie, steal, abuse, and neglect people either, does he?
So now you know, God doesn’t go to church, he goes to people. I would suggest taking him to church next time you go instead of trying to meet him there. I bet you’ll find some other folks who have done the same thing and you’ll find Jesus right there with you.
Before I go, though, I should probably be very pointed and note that while you absolutely can have Jesus at home, Jesus goes to people; and if you invite him in, he will lead you to people. Don’t fight that. If you’re staying at home to worship God, don’t be greedy, or lazy with it. Invite others over. Share worship and food and testimonies and songs and everything you have. I think you’ll experience something really incredible for being intentional about this thing. In fact…you might just find yourself having church.