In the life of a pastor you get to know many people in relatively short time. I think of Radiant Fellowship and the many people that have come and gone through-out the years. There are some that I wish would have never left and there are many that I am glad they are gone. Since the start of Radiant Fellowship and the restart of it one year after it started...only two families stuck around. The rest have left. Basically the church grew to about 40 and then deflated to 5 which is when I was asked to restart it. This August will mark 5 years since I was asked to become the pastor of Radiant Fellowship and since then God has brought it to about 80 some people (not to bad considering the black eye it had).
The issue I want to address though in this blog is the excuses people make for leaving a church. Here's the deal. Many people become disgruntled with churches for whatever reason. A big part is that the ones that come and go usually do so because they cannot get their way and therefore will go where they can. What happens though where people go to a church that accepts everyone that gets their way is that it will eventually implode. A friend of mine told me "churches are like country clubs, people become members and right away they think they own the place." What happens though is that you get adults that make every excuse under the sun why they are leaving.
If a person feels they want to go somewhere else, all they need to do is talk to the pastor. I have heard many excuses for people leaving. Some even blame why they are leaving on their kids wanting to go somewhere else. If you plan on leaving a church, do the pastor and staff a favor and share honestly why you are leaving. As long as you are going somewhere else, it isn't great that you are leaving but at least you are going somewhere else. What I have found though is people make excuses like this and never really end up going anywhere. Perhaps they even struggle with going back to the church they originally left because all of a sudden things weren't so bad now that they had a chance to see other places.
No pastor wants to see anyone leave a certain church but it happens. I would encourage people to be honest be it an email or phone call so that the church can learn from it.