Yesterday we visited a type of church I never realized existed until I received exposure to Texas life! I found out that there are MANY Cowboy Churches in surrounding states, too!
I guess our fear was that it would be a grouping of hobbyists who have something in common outside of their faith, and that would be their MAIN focus. However, the truth is that they welcomed us warmly, and the pastor delivered one of the strongest, most Biblical messages I've heard in awhile. Matt and I were quite impressed with the sermon! (Pastor Joe knows his stuff AND how to deliver it!) We were surrounded by people there seemed very passionate about the Lord, which blessed us so much!
Will we go back? Definitely. I'm not sure if we'll stay there, but it's worth looking into. I really appreciated Matt's note of wisdom... but before I get into that, I want to paint a quick picture for you.
Matt and I visited a church where the college/career group shared a HUGE building with the youth group. The building wasn't being used by the youth group that evening, but the people who were running the young adult program told us that nearly 100 youth fill this on youth evenings. There are all kinds of things to do in this gigantic... arena. Play basketball in a netted area, play video games on one of the 10 screens, watch TV on a giant screen, sit at one of the 12 round tables with a cup of coffee and chat with a friend, or lounge on one of the many couches and take a snooze. (!) They said that the middle school-aged students come and just congregate around the video game screens. We could definitely see why 100+ students would come out to youth group.
So back to Matt's wisdom. He said that he would be concerned that we would be like the middle schoolers who stare at the video games if we decided to go to the Cowboy Church. They are unlike anything we've ever been to, and they own many horses (the stable, arena and pasture is right on the church property!), so he would be cautious of us going because of the neat bells and whistles. We will be in prayer about it.
One reason why we WOULD be so inclined to attend is because this is a church of many people who were unchurched, causing many of the things that take place in the service to be less regimented. Matt and I are very passionate about the Church returning to how it originally was... a meeting of believers on the day Christ rose again... not a scheduled program for people to attend, get their fill, and leave with a smile---if the service suited them just fine.
We would ALSO consider attending because the preaching was not a topic with Scripture inserted to punctuate points. It was a sermon based on the ENTIRE 55th Psalm, and he used other accounts---in context--- from Scripture to punctuate the purposes he found in the Psalm. Very exciting! (Just make sure you hang your hat on the rack before sitting down, so the person behind you can see!) :0)
All that to say that we ARE still church-looking. Please keep praying for us, but thank God for giving us fellowship at TECH Team! What a blessing!