It’s mid-August and a lot of people are starting to plan moves. Some have just got A- Level results and are off to University, others are looking at getting their first (or a new) job and will move to a new town or city (even Country) to start work.
What sorts of things will you be thinking about as you prepare to move? I guess key things will include where you are going to live, things you need to buy, budgets, transport etc.
If you are a Christian, then I would like to encourage you to make finding a local church to be part of your top priority.
Moving somewhere new is a great opportunity for you to get involved with a local church and be part of something as the Gospel is shared. Speaking as a local church pastor, I can say that whilst we want to see growth from new believers, we also love and welcome Christian moving into the area and getting involved because the harvest field is white and ready but the labourers are few.
Look for a church that shows it loves God, where worship is central, make sure it loves God’s Word and teaches it faithfully. Find a church that loves God’s people where you will be welcomed, pastored and discipled. Be part of a church that loves to reach out, sharing the good news with others.
Being part of a local church is one of the most exciting things. I wish I’d got this when I first went University. I really failed to settle down with one church. I missed out on so much by hopping between churches.
If you are coming to the West Midlands, then there’s some great and exciting things happening. There’s a rich variety of churches, different styles, different backgrounds. Some have famous leaders, some don’t. An encouraging number have a strong commitment to faithfully teach God’s Word.
One of the most exciting things we’ve seen happening over the past few years has been a commitment to church planting and revitalisation. Maybe this will be something you’ll get to be part of, joining a group of believers heading out to start a new congregation or going with a team to help encourage and refresh a struggling congregation that without outside help would otherwise die.
You’re coming to an ethnically and socially diverse area. There are great opportunities to hare the Gospel cross culturally. God has brought people from all around the World to our door step. If you have a gift for languages then this is a great place to use them as we seek to share the good news with people who speak Spanish, Polish, Arabic, Urdu, Punjabi, Italian, German etc.
Maybe you’ll move on again as work demands. Maybe (as many do) you’ll settle locally and get work becoming a long term part of the community. Many find that being part of something here provides a foundation and training for being part of something for the Gospel longer term (e.g. and including going on to train for Gospel ministry starting with the Midlands Training Course).
Wherever you end up don’t be a consumer when it comes to church. Be part of Something very special and very wonderful. Be part of the Gospel work that God has called us to.