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4 Lame Excuses People Give for Leaving Their Church

Oh, I’m a big fan of your old church and your old pastor!

You may not know him, or them, but that’s irrelevant. We’re in this thing called the kingdom together.

You may not like it here either.

Because if you complained about the music volume there, it will be the room temperature here. Here’s a secret worth remembering: Complainers don’t like churches. At least not for more than a year, and that’s OK. Four out of the first five books of the Bible were all about how God feels about complainers.

You should go back and work things out.

This one isn’t my idea—it’s Jesus’. He stated it in the sermon on the mount when he told us to leave our gift at the altar and go work things out. Reconciliation is a primary agenda to the heart of God. We can’t just skip it and hope everything will just work itself out.

When will you grow up and feed yourself, you big spiritual baby?

Just kidding. Don’t say this, because frankly and sadly, there are plenty of churches avoiding and watering down God’s truth. Still…

You are welcome here, IF God is calling you to be on mission with us.

At the end of the day, we respect the priesthood of the believer. I don’t presume to know God’s will for anyone, so everyone is welcome to discover it as they walk with God.

We have plenty of people who have helped us plant Grace Hills who came from other area churches. Most of them didn’t leave in a huff or after a split. They simply felt called to help and were drawn to the vision we’ve continually cast. But our real heart, together, will always be for the broken, the sinful, the lost.

I don’t care why a person who is far from God wound up sitting in a seat in our movie theater on Sunday. I’m just glad they’re present. But for the scattered community of seasoned saints around us, I’d rather you stay put where you’ve been serving, unless God has called you to join the mission and embrace the vision of a new, multiplying movement of God.

Here’s the bottom line. The biggest problem with my old church…was most likely named Brandon.  

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Brandon Cox is Lead Pastor of Grace Hills Church, a new church plant in northwest Arkansas. He also serves as Editor and Community Facilitator for Pastors.com and Rick Warren's Pastor's Toolbox and was formerly a Pastor at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California. In his spare time, he offers consultation to church leaders about communication, branding, and social media. He and his wife, Angie, live with their two awesome kids in Bentonville, Arkansas.