Stop Dating The Church

sdtcblogI recently read a book by Joshua Harris entitled, “Stop Dating the Church: Fall In Love With The Family Of God.”  In this book Harris affirmed that there are many people who “date” the church, but who are unwilling to fall in love with and be committed to the church. And you know, I think he’s right. How many people do you know who are “believers” but they’re not “belongers.” They believe in Jesus, but don’t want to be tied down. They “date” the church, but want to remain independent and free of commitment and responsibility.

Friends, instead of seeing the church for all its flaws and foibles, why not see it as the wisdom of God (Ephesians 3:9-11), and the beautiful bride of Christ (Ephesians 5:25-32). Committing to the church doesn’t tie one down, rather it anchors one through the storms of life. And it’s flaws? It’s flaws provide us with an opportunity to love, serve, practice patience, and grow more like our Savior.

Listen friends, don’t allow yourself to use the excuse that the church is too messed up to commit to it. Jesus is the only one who has the right to disown or give up on the church, but he never has and never will.

Therefore, let me leave you with this challenge. Many people are fond of saying that we need to develop a heart for the poor or a heart for the lost, and these are good desires. But may I challenge you to also develop a heart for the church? Get involved. Get committed. Take on responsibility.  Invest yourself. After all, if Jesus loves the church, shouldn’t we?

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Comments 4

  • where can I get a copy of that book?!

  • Hello Josh,
    You can get it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or any Christian Bookstore. It’s a small book, an easy read, but has some really good points.

  • I like the analogy of dating vs. marriage to describe church commitment.

    But to press it a bit further, the book seems to be about exhorting daters to become committed spouses. The catch is the many of us in church leadership find ourselves in the position of the altar-hungry girlfriend wondering why the boy who is dating us doesn’t propose. Worse, we think the problem is with us, and we find ourselves changing or corrupting or polluting ourselves in the name of preserving the relationship.

    In physical relationships, the solution is often a break-up. The couple goes their separate ways and (often) both are happier.

    But is that really a viable option in churches — especially small, family/clan-dominated ones? If so, is there a way to do so without destroying the very institution to which we are so committed?

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