When the Christian church was first inaugurated the adherents met first in what we now call the upper room. They waited there initially because all of them were afraid of what might happen to them for daring to follow the Lord Jesus Christ. We find in the record of the Gospel of John 20:19-29 that they had the Holy Spirit blown on them by the Lord Jesus Christ when He appeared to them, and subsequently Thomas challenged the Lord Jesus and wanted to touch His wounds in His hands and side. The Lord Jesus openly welcomed him to touch and see for himself that He was indeed real and risen from the dead. After Pentecost, the disciples were boldly meeting in the Temple and in local homes as well.
In more modern times, there has been a resurgency of churches meeting in the home once again, or perhaps it has never fully ceased. Some Christians prefer the small intimate setting that this type of church meeting offers, since many churches that meet in the home can only accomodate about 20-25 people. In this type of church setting, it is not possible to get lost or deliberately remain unnoticed. It is styled more like a family, although this family often contains a diverse population, but the family style setting is what is viewed as more important in helping to meet people’s spiritual needs. Kerry and Becky Holton dreamed such a dream, to start and maintain a church in their home. “We have a small house church that meets weekly in the Budlong Woods neighborhood in Lincoln Square. Our agenda changes from week to week, but we usually get together Sunday evenings for prayer, worship, Bible study and discussion. We also eat together.”
Christ in Chicago – House Church states that: While our mission is to love people by helping them with their physical and spiritual needs, it does not end there. Jesus knew that without the support and encouragement of a loving family, his people would not survive. This world, after all, can be a cold and cruel place. So, Jesus and his earliest followers started small communities of faith. These small groups that often met together in homes — we may call them churches — were perfect for nurturing the spiritual growth of God’s people. By planting similar communities of faith in neighborhoods all across Chicago, we too, hope to encourage those who hunger for God and spiritual things. We long for the day when churches, communities of faith, Christian families — spring up in three-flats, apartment buildings, and homes all across our city!
They can be reached by writing to them at Christ in Chicago, P.O. Box 25130 Chicago, IL 60625-0130 or you may email them for additional information firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
“I have attended churches where everyone is called brother or sister. “Brother Dave, how are you doing today?” “Sister Kathy, you look marvelous in that dress.” They are very friendly and welcoming people. They have big smiles and will give you a hug as soon as they see you. I love those churches. This house church was different. They didn’t call each other brother or sister but they treated each other as genuine family. They laughed and tease one young girl about her new boyfriend. Laughed with one man who the week before had forgotten that they were going to be singing at a senior care center and was at the place they meet for Church instead. They were not putting on a smile to impress anyone, but rather because they enjoyed each others company,” according to WordPress Blogger – David Washburn at Pursuing Glory
However, some people choose to attend what they now call mega-churches for that very reason. They want the luxury of attending church services but they do not wish to be noticed and thus singled out for any type of recognition. For some attendees, they prefer the large setting, professional music arrangements, a multitude of different programs to choose from, such as various programs for children and youth, singles ministry, divorce recovery, Bible studies for all different age groups, cell groups etc. So is the house church better than the small, mid-size or mega-style church? The real answer to this question is this: Is the Spirit of the Living Lord and God magnified within their walls? Or is it just a social venue in the guise of a church? Whichever type of church meeting that you prefer, go and be filled with the Holy Spirit. Each person needs to decide these questions for themselves, so whether you choose the small and intimate setting of a house church or you attend a mid-size to mega-church, the point is for you to have the spiritual growth that you need to survive in this world until the day that the Lord Jesus Christ returns.
Go and Be Blessed!