Church. That one word drums up so many incredibly varying memories for so many people. Some think of boring religious rituals and Sundays wasted half asleep in an uncomfortable pew while wearing your fanciest outfit. Some have deep, deep personal wounds from a severe betrayal of trust. Some picture dusty Bibles that only get cracked open twice a year at best and the shame and judgement heaped upon them when they do. Some people have less horrific images, but still are scarred by church members who have gossiped, excluded them or just simply not been there. Some can't get past the inauthenticity that seems to hover over these buildings like a dark cloud. I know the church isn't perfect. She's got quite a few flaws, but writing her off entirely because she was misrepresented by people is like vowing to never eat ice cream again because the teenager serving scoops had a bad attitude - you're the one missing out. I get it, I've been hurt by the church, too. But I've also been healed by the church. If you've been hurt, I'm so sorry. Please forgive us! And please come back! You weren't made to do life alone. You were made to be in connection with others. You can't "do church" by yourself at home. It's not possible. And if you're staying home, you're also robbing others of being able to experience the incredible gifts you have to offer. So come, join in. Get connected. Get healed. Let's be the last hope of the world, the hands and feet of Jesus, the beautiful bride of Christ together. We need you.