T. Austin Sparks wrote a book called The School of Christ, which is a great book I may add. It basically teaches of our never ending learning of Christ on our journey with Him, and how deep that walk can go. I have, these past few years, have been on such a journey. It seems every moment of every day has been an intense, fast paced, and painful (at times) journey through True Christianity University. I guess it would be better described as True Christianity Elementary instead of University due to God breaking me down and taking me back to the basics. Christianity 101 if you will. These past few years can be best summed up by using the words of Paul when he used the words "simplicity of Christ". He was fearful that false apostles would lead God's people away from the "simplicity of Christ".
I, as so so many others, have unfortunately been led away, or better yet, never been led to such simplicity. I was taught, as many of you, that Christ is about everything but Christ alone. Ministry, worship service, Sunday and midweek meetings, Sunday School, five fold ministry, Baptisms, Church (denominational) doctrine, revivals, healing, and on and on and on and on it goes. To be honest, I don't know how anyone could have time for Christ when we are so busy pouring all we have into such things. Don't get me wrong here folks, I am not saying ALL of these things are bad of themselves, but as it is said in Hebrews "Heb 6:1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, Heb 6:2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. Heb 6:3 And this will we do, if God permit." If God permits simply means if He (aka Holy Spirit) would lead us to. I am just saying that God has so much more than what we think he wants for us. God is so much bigger than the things mentioned above, and we have replaced, for the most part, God IN US with such things. After all, why would we need to learn to walk "IN the Spirit", as Paul says, when we have all the answers all raped up into this nice religious package of how to DO church, instead of being The Church?
I know I know, hard to take huh? Think of what I have been through the past few years for God to get me to see such. That is where the "pain" part has come in. I am so grateful for what God has done in me these past few years, and I know, as T Austin Sparks says, will be forever learning in the School of Christ. I have by no means "arrived", but I am more excited to see what God is up to tomorrow.
I have been in Rhode Island for almost a year, and God has taught me much here; in fact between Rose Creek Village in Tennessee and the church here, God has forever transformed me. I am such a blessed man to have walked this journey with such great men and women of God. I have seen THE BODY of CHRIST in her glory, and she is beautiful.
I do feel it's time to move on from this leg of my journey. I believe God has called my family and myself back to the bluegrass state of Kentucky. We will be leaving a great deal here in RI, but for the first time, I don't feel I will be separated from my brothers and sisters here. We are truly one. I don't know what God has in store for us in KY, but I can't wait to see what it is. I am today, more than I ever have, willing to go and do what ever God has for me. Even if that means living in all 50 states, and every other Country in this planet, I will do so because, as Billy Graham said, "I don't know what the future holds but I know who holds the future". I will trust in the One who holds the future.
Thank you Church in RI for your love and your service to our Father. I love you all very much. As for me....I will still be thinking....God bless.