I believe that a person does not have to go to church to prove their belief in God.
I personally was raised in the church, christened at the young age of two months. I joined the Twilight Choir at the age of five and later the Youth Choir at the age of thirteen. Growing up I remember not being able to understand the word of God, but only remember coloring the pages in my picture-filled Bible. I was then too young to understand and did not feel as though the Holy Word could then be applied to my lifestyle.
These past few years I have been internally fighting with myself. I felt that I only ran to God for all of the wrong reasons. Unlike most families, my mother and stepfather never stressed the importance of church within the family. Therefore, like some, I only found myself in the House of God with my grandmother when I felt that I needed him the most and I ignored him when I felt that I was at my best.
I have not gone to church these past few years because I felt that there was not anything that Pastor Jones could teach me that I would not learn by simply reading the Bible. I believed that the pastor determined the relationship that I had with God and that he was the middle man. He spoke from his own beliefs. He spoke from his own interpretations. He made it know how awesome God was. At this time, I did not have the ability to speak from my beliefs or interpretations, but I knew that I wanted a closer relationship with God and I wanted to be loyal to his word, but previously never took the time to engage in that better relationship.
Since then, my relationship with God has gotten drastically better. I now know how to pray and I thank God at every given opportunity for all that he has done for me. I take my time reading the Bible so that I can get a better sense of understanding. I must admit that this decision occurred overnight, after having an intense discussion with my grandmother about improving my relationship with God.
Although I can no long bear the feeling of knowing how it feels to highlight important texts as Pastor Jones preached, or watching Grandma as she clapped her hands to one of the Youth Choir’s latest songs, or even the voice of the old lady with the big hats who screamed “Yes!” to everything that was ever said during the church services, I have gained an even better gift which is the understanding of God. Not yet can I teach his word to others because there is still a lot I must learn on my own. However, I can now call myself a witness and true believer of his word. I now consider myself a Christian.