During the COVID pandemic, Americans seem to have picked up some bad habits.

According to one source, “two in five… (survey) respondents shared they’ve been snacking more. Other bad habits picked up during this time included drinking too much caffeine and staying in their pajamas all day.”

Of course, not all “bad habits” are necessarily sins. Yet we recognize that all sins can become a habit. Survey results indicated an uptick in worse habits, such as binge drinking alcohol or consuming pornography. The wreckage that alcohol and pornography addictions are having on families and churches cannot be overstated.

Yet a more subtle bad habit that has emerged since 2020—which was noted in a recent Lifeway Research poll—is a decline in church attendance.

Prior generations viewed regular church attendance as weekly, but today’s standard is less.

“Among churchgoers, 4 in 5 place the standard at least twice a month… Another study of churchgoers found around 2 in 5 say they will skip church at least a few times a year just to get some extra sleep or enjoy an outdoor activity when the weather is nice.”

There are various factors that have led to this trend of church attendance being viewed as optional. The dominance of youth sports played on Sundays; the rise of technology substitutes to in-person worship; the overall societal trend away from commitment.

The Book of Hebrews warns against “forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some” (Heb. 10:25). Now, some people are not able to attend in person for good reasons, such as health or other issues and difficulties. God sees you, and the church understands and wants to minister to you and with you.

At the same time, this year provides an opportunity for followers of Christ to recommit to regular church attendance.

C.S. Lewis said, “The New Testament does not envisage solitary religion; some kind of regular assembly of worship and instruction is everywhere taken for granted in the Epistles. So, we must be regular practicing members of the Church.”

As we ask the Lord to send revival and anticipate His coming, what better activity could there be than for you to join hearts with others in a local fellowship of believers? After all, the best way to kick a bad habit is to take up a good one.