If you're looking for a church you're doing a great thing! We need Jesus and we need to surround ourselves with God's kids. But how do you know you've landed in a place where you can plug in and thrive? What should we be looking for?
Let me give you my Big Three! There are many more characteristics of dynamic church congregations but these are three that should be at the core of any church – if you're going shopping look for these.
LOVE - This is how the world will know we are his kids (John 13:25). It matters that we love each other because anyone who is hurting, and we all are, will be looking for loving and caring group of people. Most people don't need perfection, just love. When we are united in love we send a message to the world that Jesus is legit (John 17:22-23).
TRUTH - Since truth will set you free how could not want a church that busts open the word of God (John 8:32)? And we live in a world that leaks – we tend to get easily emptied of truth and rely on our own wisdom over time. This is why we need truth no matter how much it may sting our ears (II Tim. 4:1-4).
MISSION - The church has to be on the move or you don't want to get on it. We are called to prevail as a church which indicates it's moving and busting through gates of evil and opposition (Matt. 16:18). Get on board with a church that's on the go – that exactly what Jesus said to do (Matt. 28:19-20). This is the joy of the church – partnered with God to reach the world with the hope of the gospel.
You may have others and I could add to this list. But these Big Three will serve you well. If you're looking keep your eyes open for these. If you're in a church, work to make these a living reality around you.