Why should I attend church?

Why should I attend church?

By DAVID OATES, Pastor

There is a new church in Apollo Beach and I am its lead pastor.

I know what you’re thinking: “Aren’t there enough churches in the area?” I’ll let you in on something — the Tampa Bay area has the least number of religious gatherings per capita than any other region in the United States. Surprised? I sure was.

There are many reasons we chose the South Shore area to start SeaGlass Church, but for me it was highly personal.

Not because I grew up in a violent, drug-infested environment, but because I know myself better than anyone. I am a life that was changed.

Before I was Pastor David I was middle school David, high school David, and  college David. I know who I would have been without the influence of the local church.

All the Bible stories, mentoring and love that was poured into my life helped to shape the man I am today.  I learned to hear the voice of Jesus and I believe the local church is the hope of this world.

It informed my conscience

I learned to care for all people; to be accountable for how I treated others; to let go of bitterness and resentment; to forgive.

The local church instilled a sense of purpose

God has a plan for each of us. There’s no need to travel around the world — God will use you where you live.

It provided the context for life-long friendships; a sense of belonging

I have formed life-long friendships through the local church. Living in community with other followers of Jesus creates a bond that gives you confidence. Knowing someone will be there in a time of need is reassuring. Everyone wants to belong and feel cared for.

It redefined freedom

I learned early that freedom to do what I want ends up becoming slavery. True freedom comes when we let go of the past and focus on Jesus every day.

SeaGlass Church is committed to helping people follow Jesus. I believe following Jesus will make your life complete — and it will give your life purpose. In Luke 4:18 Jesus says “The spirit of the Lord is upon me….to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind…”

Easter services, egg hunt, free lunch

The community is welcome to attend a Good Friday service, April 14 at 6 p.m., and  Easter services, April 16 at 9 and 11 a.m. There will be an Easter egg hunt at both service times for the children, and a free barbecued pork lunch for everyone after each service.

Location, information

Weekly Sunday services are at 9 and 11 a.m. with children’s ministry during both. SeaGlass Church is located at 202 Flamingo Drive, Apollo Beach, one block off of U.S. 41. For more information, visit SeaGlass.church, or call 813-773-4333.

If you aren’t able to go to SeaGlass Church then choose one of the many life-giving churches in our area such as South Bay Church with Pastor David Speicher; Bell Shoals Baptist of Apollo Beach with Campus Pastor Matt Hill; Wellspring Community Church with Pastor Joey Adkins; The Crossing at South Shore with Campus Pastor Hector Rivera; or Bayside Church in Parrish, with Campus Pastor David Murphy.

My prayer for you is that the local church would change your life and that this Easter you would discover for yourself the life that can be found following Jesus.

The lost found. The bound freed. Identity fulfilled.

Inspired by the sermon “The Church Saved My Life” by Pastor Andy Stanley

 

The story of SeaGlass Church can be found here.

 

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