10 Reasons to Give Church a Try

give church a try

My mom understood the amazing benefits of faith for her children.  Having said that, she was not a spiritual or religious person. But every Sunday, she and my father took us to church.  Years later, I asked her why she took us even though she said she didn’t get anything out of it. “I knew it would teach you good things,” she said. What my Mom knew intuitively, research has proven.

In a summary of research findings in her book, Strong Mothers, Strong Sons, author Meg Meeker writes, “The studies found that faith improves a teen’s chances of staying away from…drugs, drinking, sexual activity, and truancy.” The research also found that faith increases self-esteem and decreases the risk of depression. So if you take your children to church, keep doing it. If you don’t, consider the benefits to your children. iMOM writer Dana McCain shares 10 more reasons to give church a try.

1. It’s not your grandma’s church.

If you’ve been away from church for a while, you may be shocked (in a good way) by how fresh church programming and worship environments may feel. Churches have been listening to those who don’t attend and many have responded by creating environments that seem more relevant to contemporary life.

2. If you loved your childhood church, it’s still out there, too!

Perhaps one of the best things about the modern church is that there is great variety in religious expression available. Even among mainline denominations, you can find congregations that stick to the traditional hymns and liturgy, and those who plug in electric guitars—with the scriptural values being taught staying constant across the board.

3. Free donuts.

They’re probably by the free coffee. Cha-ching!

4. Kids are curious. Church explains things.

Where did we come from? Why are there rainbows? Was baby Jesus really born in a barn? If you’re as tired of trying to have all the answers as most parents of preschoolers, you’ll welcome a chance to let some sainted Sunday School teacher take over once in a while.

5. Your teen needs an anchor.

Your teen may be up against tough odds when it comes to making good choices amidst the peer pressure at school. A church youth group just might give him the encouragement he needs to make good choices, even if it’s unpopular with some.

6. Hope lives there.

Think yours is the only marriage that has faced tough times? In your church small group, you may learn that your story isn’t that uncommon, and that there’s hope. Sharing with others who’ve walked the same road can help you see past the problem and hang on until a better day.

7. A chance to use your talents.

Love to sing but haven’t had a place to do so in years? There’s a church choir or a praise team with your name on it somewhere. Love building things? Your local churches are probably sending mission teams out to do construction for those in need on a regular basis. A church body can provide a chance to use your gifts and experience the joy that comes with it.

8. Safe harbor in a storm.

Many are the families who can say that when a crisis arose in their lives, church friends saved the day. Whether it’s by bringing meals or babysitting for a sick mom, or comforting a family after a loss, church people are good at loving one another in practical ways when it matters most. (This is why so many church ladies have their names on the bottoms of their casserole dishes. Excessive cooking and taking has necessitated it. Trust us—you want these women in your life.)

9. Church Supper!

If you’re lucky, your church will offer a once-weekly supper as an opportunity for fellowship among the members. This is also known as “The Night Mom Doesn’t Have to Cook.”

10. Timeless advice for a rapidly changing world.

Do you feel like things are changing around you at the speed of light, and that you don’t even know what to tell your kids about what’s right or wrong sometimes? The Bible is a timeless resource for navigating life, and going to church will connect you to those core ideas which have stood—and will continue to stand—the test of time.\

If you’re looking for a church near you, then try searching this nation-wide directory of churches.

 © 2014 iMOM. All Rights Reserved. Family First, All Pro Dad, iMOM, and Family Minute with Mark Merrill are registered trademarks.

In The Comments

Do you take your kids to church?

  • Charlene Leber

    I always took my kids to church but not for the reasons you listed! Some of them offended me very much. The church is the saved and following God’s commands. You never mentioned God in your comments at all. The church lets us know what God wants from us to serve Him. The church is not to entertain us! The church is for the spiritually minded. The church is to find out how to be saved and go to a better place after this life is over. So many people go to church for the reasons you listed; it benefits the goer here in this world. The Lord’s church benefits us here on earth and benefits us in the after life. Come and worship with the Lord’s church (The Church of Christ) and find out what God expects and deserves from us.

    • Christinamomma

      I’m much offended by your comments. Not all who go to Church worship God, this article did however, mention Faith and Spirituality. Also, Church is a lace for all the things mentions. Only in your heart, mind, and actions can you really be commited to God. No matter where you choose to worship. I think this is a great article. You used this as a chance to advertise your Church which I think is greatly disrespectful.

    • Dana Hall McCain

      Hi Charlene. Thanks for your response. I understand the tension you’re comments express, because it’s being felt by lots of Christians these days. You’re correct in that in the language of believers, “the Church” is those who have a relationship with Christ. However, in order to hear the gospel and have an opportunity to make a decision to enter into a relationship with Christ, non believers need the opportunity to interact with the Christian community. Very few non believers show up on Day One “spiritually minded,” as you say. They come seeking answers about how to make sense of their lives and deal with complex challenges. To them “the church” is a building where people meet who might just have some answers.

      Bear in mind that many iMOM readers are not Christians, and we try to offer advice that can benefit everyone. If something we say piques a reader’s curiosity and helps them to think about the reasons faith matters in the life of a family–that’s a win! Maybe God will use that to encourage them to “give church a try,” as we suggest in this article. Maybe once they do, they’ll discover truth more profound and meaningful than they even anticipated, and their lives will be changed for eternity! #babysteps

    • Melanie Kern

      1 Cor 13 “If I speak in the tongues[a] of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,[b] but do not have love, I gain nothing.

      Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

      Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I
      reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

      And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

      The BIBLE reveals God’s general will for His people, and His people are His church – not a building. You can sit in church all day long, but that doesn’t make you a Christian any more than sitting in a garage all day makes you a car. If you aren’t living out His word (i.e. walking in love), then being in church doesn’t mean a single thing except you’re occupying space in a building once a week or so. Do I personally think that going to church for some has become more of a social fulfillment than a spiritual one? Yes. HOWEVER, if they are coming, then they are hearing the Word and the seed is being planted…. GOD can use ANYTHING to get His message out. He has shown me things via secular movies & music just as much as He has reached me through His Word. WITH GOD, ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE.

  • NW

    How can we know what God expects and deserves from us IF we don’t even get to church? Invite someone and let GOD do what HE does best. Having a DIRECT relationship with God is what really matters, is what you do outside of the church that He cares the most. Be blessed Charlene.

  • Catherine

    Great reasons! I’ll share this with my husband, who doesn’t attend church.

  • Rick Mays

    Sorry you were offended. May God’s Holy Spirit lift you up and take control of your mind and sole. I know being in church and with Christain’s is a necessary part of our growth. There are otmany things in this world that pulls are children and young adults off the path that God would have them travel, so using church activities to draw them in I consider a tool that is pleasing to God. May God add his blessings to these words and open your heart to see more of his plan.

  • Kim W.

    I loved this! Thank you for posting! I go to church for many reasons- spiritual, to be closer to God, to learn MORE about the Bible and what all of this means, to meet other families that share in my beliefs, to listen to fun music, to have fun, for some time with my husband alone while the kids are in Kids’ Church (which they never want to leave and can’t wait to go back every week), to get out of the house, to get a boost to start my week as well as a pleasant end to the previous week, to learn how to be a better Christian… the list goes on and on! I agree with the fact that we need to have different church styles out there for everyone. People that have previously been put off by Christianity as a whole because of a select few might not feel inclined to go to a church that is traditional. But, a contemporary service might suit them so that they can meet people that are more like-minded and open them up to Christianity in a way that they didn’t know existed. As Christians, we’re here to be disciples of Christ, and share Christ’s love. If that means church needs to be fun, have donuts, loud music, pipe organs and choir, life/small groups, Parents-Night-Out, or any other means, then I’m all for it! I want people to know Him, love Him, and be able to go to a place where they feel completely comfortable in doing so! These are GREAT reasons to share with those that might feel a little nervous about taking the plunge! Thank you! <3

  • gigi

    What a relevant and insightful article! Oh the “true” Christians don’t go for the reasons you stated, and they’re all in a huff and offended at your statements, but God loves them too! Instead of judging and instantly criticizing, I would suggest that people offer other (perhaps more obvious to you, but not to the rest of US) reasons for attending church and how you benefit from it. I left church years ago and I don’t miss it (and the holier than thou attitude) AT ALL, but this article makes me think. If I return, I hope I end up with believers who have a sense of humor, and therefore, “real” and loving, like the author. Because otherwise, I’ll say to those who posted comments, what I used to say to people who were “saved” before I was, “if heaven only has people like you, I’m happy to not be there.” Think about it! We all fail and fall short of God’s glory and yet no one does a better disservice to God than Christians and I’ll take it one step further and say Christians IN the Church. We’re not cookie cutters of each other and I’m so thankful that God’s grace and mercy extends beyond the walls of those buildings we have everywhere in this country… we sure do need more people walking the walk instead of talking the talk in and OUT of those buildings.

  • KR2014

    Planting the seed is what matters what people do with it after that is up to them. God isn’t concerned with who is at church or why he is just happy they are there that is half the battle. There are some Christians who shy away from church because of all the judgment. This article is simple all people should be and feel welcome at church and if they don’t what’s the point. Love one another!

  • Stacy

    We take our children to church. We attend a Methodist church and our children go to catholic school. I read what I think is a great perspective a couple of days ago. The quote was, “we do not choose to go to church, we go because God invited us.”

  • Nancy Hallock

    I live outside baltimore, am 68, have pulmonary edema, congestive heart failure; bleeding ulcer and anemia; post-polio where by it’s difficult to walk anymore; digenerative spine disorder–in constant pain, live on oxycontin; diabetes; PTSD–from all 4 kinds of abuse in previous marriage of 30 years. I have gone to various churches who just treat me terribly. I spend time in the hospital–week at a time–and no one visits. I can’t get out of the house on my own and I’ve begged so many churches to help me find someone, even I would pay, to take me to the doctor and NO one helps. I think churches have totally done away with the Good Samaritan Story!!!

    • Christen

      Nancy, I am so sorry that you haven’t found anyone to help you. I’m so sorry if this comes across as judgey but it usually helps to have a church and a community to rally around you before things go badly. I don;’t meant to say that they shoudln’t help you now because many churches do have ministries that reach out to shut ins or elderly. They should absolutely rally around you and step up to help those in need but I think when you sow into a church community and serve in ministries that help others they are more likely and willing to be there when you need help. I hope that came out how I was intending and that someone else may see this as reason #11 to attend church.

    • kodypchef

      Hi Nancy, I am sorry to hear about your experiences with the churches in your area. I have already lifted you up in prayer and want you to know God is awesome! He hears your cries and He sees what you are going through. My email address is please email me if you would like to start a prayer chain. My husband and I live outside of Kansas City so we can’t help with your transportation issues, but I will continue to pray for this issue. God is too good to not put your trust in Him. He will never leave you not forsake you.
      In His love,

  • PJ

    Free donuts? Wow, I like the idea of getting people to church, but I’m kind of dismayed that donuts made the top 10 list of reasons you giving to moms. Not surprised I guess, though.

    • LA

      I’m sure it was just a light-hearted ‘plus’ for being there. I like that she threw a chuckle into the list.

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