It happens. Even those who deeply love their local congregation sometimes go through situations and circumstances that test that love. In some cases, that love slowly erodes—almost imperceptibly. Here are some signs you might be losing your love:
1. Your enthusiasm for gathering with the congregation is waning. There was a time when you excitedly got ready for church, but not now. Whether it’s a small group or a worship service, your attendance is increasingly only an obligation. You still go, but with little zeal.
2. You pray less for your church and its leaders. That happens because your desire to support them and intercede for them is changing. In fact, you might even be struggling with figuring out how to pray.
3. Your long-term friendships in the church seem less and less significant. You’re not even sure what’s happened, but you don’t hang out with other church members like you once did. Fun with others seems almost non-existent.
4. You don’t talk with joy about your church like you once did. Some time ago, you naturally and passionately talked about your church. You invited anybody and everybody to join you in attendance. That zeal, though, is declining.
5. You increasingly see only the negative in your church. Good stuff might well be happening, but you don’t see it. Something is clouding your vision—and any remaining love you have isn’t strong enough to see through it.
6. You don’t sing during worship like you used to. You sing with little joy, low volume, and weak worship. At times, you might even only “mouth” the words rather than sing at all. Your heart just isn’t in it anymore.
7. You just know things have changed. You can’t put your finger on it, but something’s different. Every day seems to pull you more away from your church.
If you find yourself somewhere in this post, here are some ways to start loving your church again:
- Be honest. Talk to God. Tell your pastor or small group leader. Get some other believers praying with you and for you.
- Confess to God if needed. Sometimes our own sin or bitterness turns our heart cold. Confession is a must in those cases.
- Don’t run—keep serving. Backing away is not the best way to reignite love for a congregation. Stay faithful. Keep using your gifts as an act of love for God and others—even when your heart doesn’t “feel” that way.
- Start looking for glimpses of what God’s doing in your church. Look for the negative, and you’ll find it; watch for God’s hand, though, and you might just see it. The latter is better.
Let us know how our Church Answers family might pray for you.
Posted on March 14, 2023
Dr. Chuck Lawless is a leading expert in spiritual consultation, discipleship and mentoring. As a former pastor, he understands the challenges ministry presents and works with Church Answers to provide advice and counsel for church leaders.
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