I got a note from a friend FaceBook. Hadn’t heard from her in years! I guess that’s one of the cool things about social networks, you can rediscover old friendships. I even made contact with my second cousin who I haven’t seen or heard from in probably 40 years! Cool!
Anyhow, my friend asked me about having the church meet in a home and thought I’d share some of my response for the benefit of those who may not know much about our ministry life. Here’s what I told her:
Great to hear from you! No, we’re not affiliated with any particular denomination. Home gatherings tend to be pretty loosely connected, if they’re connected at all. Personally, I think they need to be networked with other small groups, or at least have relational connections with other mature believers. They can even be linked with traditional churches if the umbrella church isn’t too controlling. It’s just a good idea for groups not to be isolated; to allow themselves to be called into question by others. That’s being a part of the larger body of Christ.
As far as how they’re run, I liken it to a family gathering. Imagine a cherished family member or friend coming in from out of town, or the soldier son coming home on leave. Family and close friends get together for the occasion. They tell stories, laugh, eat together–serious moments mingle with fun and genuine affection. A house church should be much like that, with Jesus as the honored participant. Think about planning such a get-together and you get a picture of what a gathering of the church at somebody’s house might look like, except on a regular basis. Not much more complicated than that!
As far as where house churches are, I’ll see if I can find out if there are any in your area. If not, you can always gather friends and or family for a regular evening (or morning) get-together and celebrate the Lord. Nobody needs to know that it’s church. People usually figure that out in time!