When Your Church Leaves You Spiritually Unfulfilled

It can be tough to find a good church. The worship services at many churches are either completely irrelevant and old-fashioned or are too much like a show – flashy, loud, and overproduced. Even if we do find a place where we can really worship, it can be hard to really connect with people, build relationships, and be fed spiritually. Sometimes it seems like churches just don’t get it

Or maybe we are focusing on the wrong thing.

The style of worship and culture of our churches isn’t the problem. We tend to focus too much on finding a church that we can “connect with” or that offers what we are looking for and then blame the Church for being out of touch or irrelevant when we can’t find anything that satisfies us or leaves us feeling fulfilled.The problem isn’t the Church or local churches – it’s us. So many of us are too distracted and lazy to read, study, worship, and build relationships on our own, but unwilling to accept responsibility for our lack of spiritual growth. Everything that takes place at churches should be happening every day, but when it only takes place one day a week, of course we’ll feel unfulfilled.

The focus of a worship service isn’t for us to feel connected and satisfied, it’s to worship God together as one body. We feel frustrated and unfulfilled because of our lack of commitment and inability to accept responsibility – not because the Church isn’t doing a good enough job.

So the next time you are feeling unfulfilled or dissatisfied, don’t blame your church – take a look at yourself and the effort that you are putting in. Until we are willing to take responsibility for our own spiritual growth and stop expecting other people to facilitate it for us, we will always feel frustrated and unfulfilled. Until we are willing to study, worship, pray and build relationships on our own throughout the rest of the week, the study, worship, prayer, and relationships we participate in at church will never be enough.

There is a huge difference between going to church and being the Church. Expecting something we do for 1-2 hours out of a 168 hour week to satisfy all our spiritual needs is like expecting a multivitamin to supply all our dietary needs. When we expect a supplement to supply the majority of what we need to be healthy, we end up feeling weak, sick, and vulnerable. We need to stop whining about not being fed and start feeding ourselves. Only when we have a well-balanced diet will we ever be healthy, growing, and able to reach our full potential.

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6 Comments

  1. Good article, Tim, and timely for me. I’ve been having some of these feelings, so I really appreciated your article.

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  2. Well said, Tim. I think church staff struggle so much with trying to make the church what it needs to be for everyone who walks through the doors. This is a good reminder that a lot of it really falls on the shoulder’s of the individual. Sure, we want to provide opportunities for growth and worship, etc, but it’s not all up to us.

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    1. Thanks Lindsey! We appreciate everything you guys do at Carterville. I just get tired of hearing people complain about churches and assuming the problem is with the churches rather than themselves. I guess it’s easier to blame someone else and people don’t want to take responsibility or make an effort.

      Keep up the good work and know that you’re appreciated!

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  3. I’m leaving my church to transfer to another after attending the same church for 16 years. I wouldn’t say that I take no responsibility for my faith (I’m so far from perfect, it’s almost laughable; but I do my best to read my Bible on a daily basis, obey my parents no matter how much it hurts, I pray and trust Him as much as I can, talk to the church elders) and this article does not seem to help me. I’ve taken a look at myself, yet I feel that everywhere I go, I see church politics, fake smiles, and youth pastors who do not reach out to their flock (I spoke with my mother about my concerns, and she agrees). This leaves me in a bind. What do I do next?

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