Make Boston Feel Like Home

How To Make Boston Feel Like Home

Emily Albernaz

Making a Big City Feel Like Home

When my husband and I moved to Boston last July from Texas, I was unsure what that would mean for our first year of marriage. We picked up all of our belongings and moved to a place which basically is the polar opposite of everything I had personally experienced in my life. We knew we wanted to find a church home. It was what our relationship was built on from day one, and what we wanted our marriage to be built on as well. We did a Google search for "non-denominational churches in Boston" and found “StoryHeights Church”. We were thrilled upon arrival! People were greeting us with friendly and warm hospitality from the moment we set foot in the door. Not exactly the picture I had worked up in my head when people told me that New Englanders were rude. Everyone was so kind and inviting.

The worship music was REALLY good, for a smaller, baby church...I was really impressed. Not just because of the quality of the music, but because you immediately sense there is a greater meaning and purpose behind the words being sung, and that people actually meant what they were singing. Also, I could feel this peace come over me that this was definitely where we would plant our roots.

Take the Next Step & Attend BELONG Membership Lunch

About a month after we started attending StoryHeights, we decided to fully commit to becoming members at StoryHeights Church. It was probably the most formal yet informal membership lunch I had ever attended. To be honest, I was pleasantly surprised that the leaders of StoryHeights were all present and were genuinely interested in getting to know every person that becomes a part of the church. It was a breath of fresh air. Most of all, it made my husband and I feel like we were at home, truly belonged in this city, and that we were a part of something so much bigger than ourselves.

If you’re interested in hearing more about the ways you can get involved in the city of Boston by serving others, you should definitely check out StoryHeights Church. There are so many ways to make an impact in our city and I can honestly say, we’ve made lifelong friends in the short amount of time we’ve been attending. I’m absolutely certain that if you are searching for answers, you have questions about God, wondering what God’s plans are for your life, who you are, how you can make a difference in the world, or if you are just feeling lonely and need a place to call home, the people at StoryHeights Church will bring you in and love you like I can’t even put into words.

Healing and Purpose

If I said that the moment I walked into the doors of StoryHeights Church all my problems went away, I would be lying. We are still human and are conditioned as such to know missed chances, disappointment, failure and heartbreak. It is, however, evident that in the time we have been planted in a church in Boston God has done something amazing in my heart and in our marriage. I’ve had many disappointments over the years and have felt disenfranchised by churches that I have attended in the past. Unfortunately, many Christians have hurt me. Having had the honor of being a Christian since my senior year of high school, I’ve had my fair share of experiences that can make or break someone who decides to follow Jesus. I’ve tried desperately to be planted in a handful of churches in the past decade, but the soil of those churches led to bad fruit in my life...or bad fruit in other people’s lives that rubbed off on me.

I believe many people in Boston are under the impression that Christians look down on people who don’t attend church. I can tell you, though, as a Christian that Christians look down on people who DO attend church too. Why? Because, we are human, and it is in our sinful nature to pass judgement on each other’s faults, place blame, shame, guilt and even hurt other people. However, Jesus is the constant, the healer of our brokenness and restorer of our shame. If you stay away from church because of a few bad people, you are missing out on the AMAZING destiny God has for you and God loves to restore the parts of our hearts that no one else even knows.

Today, I turn thirty years old. As I look back on my life with and without Jesus, I can honestly say that serving Him almost half of my entire life has been the best thing I’ve ever accomplished even if it’s been messy, even if it’s been challenging sometimes, even if I’ve been hurt along the way. No one could ever make me want to turn back the hands of time and undo all the blessings God has given me.

During this month, God has been revealing some truths that I want to share with you today to help Boston feel like home for you.

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you," declares the LORD, "and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you," declares the LORD, "and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile." -Jeremiah 20:11-14

Truth #1: God isn’t finished yet.

Every time you have felt as if you didn’t belong or weren’t accepted or were rejected, God was preparing you for this moment right now to find a place where you belong.

Truth #2: God has a plan for your life.

God’s plans for you are GOOD. His plans are to fill you with hope and excitement about your future.

Truth #3: God is waiting for you to call on Him.

We often ask where God was when X, Y or Z happened. Did you call on Him? Did you seek Him with all of your heart? He is waiting to be found by you.

Truth #4: He has a home for you.

He has arms stretched out ready to bring you home from the places you have felt alone or ostracized. Maybe you grew up in church, but the religious people drove you away? Today is a new day and God is still there.

TRUTH #5: Join a local church and find community.

There are a ton of great new churches all over Boston, and today is the day to make the decision to come back to church so you can make Boston home and find community in a big city! I may be a little biased, but I know you can find the answers you are looking for at StoryHeights Church. If you don’t have a church to call home, you should definitely check us out at either of our two locations on Sunday mornings in Newton at 10:45am or Southie at 11:00am.


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