Just so it’s not all about complaints…
Here’s a few things I love about my church (and I won’t say the name here because this isn’t a plug for my church, though if anyone should wander by who just happens to be looking for a solid church in the Northern Virginia area I’d be happy to share). Skipping the most obvious stuff, the stuff that I wouldn’t be there otherwise without (biblically sound!)…
(1) A lot of great verse-by-verse preaching. I really enjoy both topical and verse-by-verse preaching, but at my church now the percentage of verse-by-verse preaching is higher than topical, whereas at my previous churches the reverse was true. This difference takes good preaching and makes it even better for me, because it’s fresher.
(2) A friendly congregation that actually looks you in the eye when shaking your hand, and often introduce themselves (though I can never remember the names, to my enduring shame), and even sometimes invite you to church activities. I’d say all my churches were friendly…but it’s quite possible this is the friendliest I’ve been to.
(3) A large(-ish, that’s relative, it’s not a megachurch) church with all the resulting activities and classes, that holds multiple services in an intimate-feeling sanctuary that makes it feel like you’re going to a small church. Of course, this may need to change eventually; I regret the strain that multiple services puts on church staff, especially the preacher. But I very much like the feeling of the sanctuary now — you can look around and see everyone easily. (Actually, as I’m thinking about it, my church where I used to live was bigger, around 3,000 attendance I think when I left, and we had built a new sanctuary while I was there that held I think over 1000, and I loved that too! The sound of the music was incredible. So I guess there are some great things about both the smaller and the larger.)
(4) Care paid that all aspects of worship are God-honoring. Especially I would note the music, where so many churches (it seems to me) do not give sufficient attention to the lyrics, but in my church we haven’t sung a single song where I would quibble over lyrics (and only one song I personally don’t care for, because it sounds too much like a 13-year-old girl singing about her boyfriend — “My Savior’s always there for me…” — but as I said that’s only a personal preference…and it was only once 😉 ). There’s no “sendin’ it to ya'” or “I did it my way” or “and it burns, burns, burns, like a flame goin’ higher” here!
I think I started out with a few more, but it’s getting late and my brain’s slowing. So, perhaps you have a few to add!
Praise God for all churches that love and honor Him in all things.