New Testament Church Proliferation Digest

 

Spreading the Gospel via House Churches

 


New Testament Church Proliferation Digest Saturday, January 26 2002 Vol 02 : 021
Re: [NTCP] A Unavoidable War
RE: [NTCP] Re: A "Just War" -
Re: [NTCP] A Unavoidable War - response
Re: [NTCP] Early church practice (was: cell groups) - response to Link
Re: [NTCP] Early church practice (was: cell groups)
[NTCP] Re: Wounds Upon Wounds
Re: [NTCP] Re: Wounds Upon Wounds
Re: [NTCP] Re: Wounds Upon Wounds

Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2002 15:23:49
From: "David Jaggernauth"
Subject: Re: [NTCP] A Unavoidable War

Dan said:

"God has an enemy. That means God's people also have an enemy. As the Bible and
human history make clear, there have always been human beings who were willing
to ally themselves with God's enemy in order to damage His people. The warfare
is unavoidable" I tend to adopt the pacifist ideals of the bible ( if your
enemy is hungry feed him, if he thirsts, give him water ) I do not interpret
this to mean as well, if he is under attack give him guns. However, how do we
reconcile this with a man's right to defend his family and property. If it is
in your power to defend your wife and children from harm, shouldnt you??

How do reconcile as well this scripture:

Luke 22:35-38 And he said unto them, When I sent you without purse, and scrip,
and shoes, lacked ye any thing? And they said, Nothing. Then said he unto
them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip:
and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

My old pastor interpreted this to mean that the Church should be run like a
commercial business. When you read the next verse however it becomes clear what
Jesus was saying,

"For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me,
And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have
an end. And they said, Lord, behold, here are two swords. And he said unto
them, It is enough" Jesus was warning them of the violent persecution that was
to come. But can we intrepret this to mean that we should bear arms to defend
ourselves??? Does the history of the Church show that any time during the first
and second century, Christians used arms to defend themselves??

Jesus also said that those who live by the sword will also die by the sword,
and we interpret this to support capital punishment.

I Timothy 2:1-4 says: "I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications,
prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;

For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and
peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.

For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;

Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the
truth."

This scripture suggests to me that the reason God says to pray for the Govt. is
so there will be peace. Why?? So that all men will be saved (come to the
knowledge of truth).

If there is no peace we cannot preach to bring men to that knowledge, when
there is war, there is no freedom. There are curfews etc. You cannot go into
the public in safety to preach.

How then, can we reconcile making war with preaching the gospel??? They seem to
be opposed.

David Jaggernauth


------- <><><> -------


Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2002 10:58:03 -0500
From: "Samuel Buick"
Subject: Re: [NTCP] Re: A "Just War" -

>
From: "vanessadd"

>Another use for knowing how to fight: working in dangerous barrios to help the
>people there. If my husband had not been a street fighter as a child, and I
>practically a street kid myself, we would not be able to enter the places that
>not even the police will fo to, in order to do our charity work.

While missionaries in France in the sixties (1956-1967)my parents had
intercessors praying before going on the street. They prayed until my parents
came home. They always came home safe. Other believers with no covering and
intercession, they were mugged, attacked, knifed, and a host of other
incidents. Coincidence? Don't think so. The same thing has happened to me in
the `90's here in Canada.

What is important is not whether we can physically fight in the natural, but
whether we fight spiritually. Yes, our physical safety may be at risk, but in
that case I pray for guidance and safety and if the Lord would make an
alternative safe place for ministry. Sam


------- <><><> -------


Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2002 11:12:40 -0500
From: "Samuel Buick"
Subject: Re: [NTCP] A Unavoidable War - response

Dear David:

David said:
>If there is no peace we cannot preach to bring men to that knowledge, when
>there is war, there is no freedom. There are curfews etc. You cannot go into
>the public in safety to preach.
>
>How then, can we reconcile making war with preaching the gospel??? They seem
>to be opposed.
>
>David Jaggernauth

I wholeheartedly say AMEN!!!

Blessings,

Sam


------- <><><> -------


Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2002 11:47:37 -0500
From: "Samuel Buick"
Subject: Re: [NTCP] Early church practice (was: cell groups) - response to Link

Hi All!

Link said:

>I'm a pro-house church type of guy. I believe home meetings are great, and
>think building church buildings CAN be a big waste of money and can redirect
>people's attention off the kingdom of God. It does seem like a lot of people
>out there are building their own kingdom, trying to keep the money flowing in
>and the monuments going up.

That is exactly the point...another 'kingdom' has taken root!! We are not of
these expressions of kingdom living.

Just how bad is it...take a look around at what is going on and everyone just
carries on as if there is nothing wrong! It looks to me like the orchestra is
playing for time as the Titanic sinks!

>But I do hate to see the 'us versus them' attitude in the house church
>movement. A lot of the things people use to distinguish who is 'us' and who
>is 'them' are things like the kind of building 'them' meet in, and various
>things relating to church structure.

Actually Link, the 'us versus them' that I have experienced myself has come at
the hands of the 'them'. Most house churchers that I have met, especially over
the last year are people who care passionately about: 1. The Kingdom and the
King first and foremost 2. The body of Christ as a whole - every believer in
every expression and wineskin 3. The reality of the citywide/regional church as
the best expression of Christian unity 4. Not hurting others as they have been
hurt and misunderstood by the institutional church . 5. Building bridges with
those in the institutional church who are open to relationship

Unfortunately many of 'us' have been demonized by former friends and even
associates in the ministry. So what are we to think or say or do if we cannot
speak out safely about planting house churches on this list?

There are some on this list that have been beligerent and very strong willed in
their opinions, and some of us have had to continually defend and justify what
we are and believe. This wears us out. I won't be justifying house churches
any longer. The one's that challenged me, well let just say I filtered out
their email address and I don't get their emails anymore. You know what they
say, "outta sight...outta mind". No offence to those people, but I am sick of
the debate and I am sick of not being heard. Jay said it best in his post a
couple of days ago to Michael. All of us are guilty of it. We will embrace
what we want to hear, and we will reject what we don't want to hear.

I have personally been able to interact more with the rest of the list since I
have done this. So, for me it has worked.

Sam~


------- <><><> -------


Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2002 22:39:52 -0500
From: "Michael Gastin"
Subject: Re: [NTCP] Early church practice (was: cell groups)

- ----- Original Message -----
From: "forwarded" To: Sent: Friday, January 25,
2002 8:40 AM
Subject: [NTCP] Early church practice (was: cell groups)
>
>
From: Link Hudson

>But I do hate to see the 'us versus them' attitude in the house church
>movement. A lot of the things people use to distinguish who is 'us' and who
>is 'them' are things like the kind of building 'them' meet in, and various
>things relating to church structure.
>
>Link

Amen to that, Brother Link!!!

If all we can do is distinguish ourselves by what type of building we meet in
we are a sorry bunch. In fact, if that is our penultimate defining factor, then
we really are not any different than 'them'.

I would hope that most here in favor of house church do not use this metric as
their litmus test.

I would agree with you and brother Michael Miller that a building and some sort
of order is supported in scripture. I would also hasten to add that just
because they are present in the scriptures, they do not excuse the gross abuses
we see in our world today by many in the institutional church . There is no
excuse for flabby, weak, carnal, selfish, passive Christians, either. So, if I
can use my home or if I can use a rented store front to make disciples, I will.

It is not so much about the form, but rather the function. The form should
follow the function. If a city wide meeting of believers is impossible in my
living room then I am getting some space that meets our needs. but, if I need
to fellowship regularly with my brothers and sisters in my neighborhood, then
my door is open, my pantry is utilized and the warmth of our home is available.

If the Lord so blesses me that we are seeing converts all over our region, you
can bank on the fact that I will rent some space to start holding classes,
studies, prayer, worship times ...etc. (Unless of course I am directed by the
Lord to specifically not do that!) I will also plug them into homes that are
weekly gathering places for believers, too. But, I can also say that I will not
go out, rent some space, hang out a sign that says "Acme Ministries," and hope
to see folk start walking in looking for a church service, collection plate and
a good message.

It is so easy to argue form. It is like chasing one's tail. (Anyone here have a
tail???) Christians have been doing it for centuries. Jesus spent no time on
form. Paul also did not spend a ton of time telling us what the form of our
meetings should take. He DID give us some basic guidelines for behavior and
what is important. The bulk of the NT as I read it is about fulfilling
function.

I want to stand before the Lord having fulfilled my function. I also look
forward to hearing about the work you all are doing on this list. I know you
have more going on than some of the conversations you engage in. I am always
encouraged to read about a small victory, a new plan to reach people, new
converts added to the faith, what God is doing in your area.

I hope to hear more soon and I hope to have more to share.

Mike Gastin


------- <><><> -------


Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2002 23:19:38 EST
From: TheologusCrucis

Subject: [NTCP] Re: Wounds Upon Wounds

Howdy, all!

Thought I'd break from the war thread to report another type of war experience
I had last night in meeting with the District Director for Church Development,
my Sectional Presbyter, and Sectional Missions Rep. Yet I hesitate being this
open and honest about my situation -- but ya have to start somewhere, right?

My wife and I had been District appointed home missionaries by the old Church
Development guy. After last night, we are not under any classification -- they
couldn't understand how the community of faith that I am seeking to gather can
be called a "church." More that once I could hear the frustration in their
voices as they tried to "classify" me.

After 16 months here in Amhest, they wanted to know what progress we had made,
if any of the "models" we had learned in Bootcamp had helped us to form a
group. This was not a get-to-know-you session that we had expected, it was a
full on evaluation of my and my wife's ministry. I told them that we didn't
believe in the church being a managerial model. That we wanted to plant and
water the Word in relationship and no-strings friendship while God gathered in
His harvest. That from this group, based on friendship, the gifts given by the
Spirit for each to serve each other would determine the "structure" of what our
community would look like.

It was an interesting experience watching the face of the Church Development
guy. There was not one time, at any point, where we connected. There wasn't
even a flicker in his eyes. The presbyter, whom I had counted on as a
sympathetic friend, who had very generously supported me in my earlier efforts,
basically stood back and said very few words at all. The other guy, a young
pastor (actually, they were all young, no one over the age of 45) tried to
piece together what I was doing, but kept coming up with Chi Alpha, the AG's
college ministry. You see, they try to minister "relationally."

The District had been paying our GSLs for the past year -- we were church
planters who both worked full time jobs where we were called and qualified. As
of last night, we no longer qualify. However, the guy that planted a church in
the next town over, who received salary from the District until last year when
they reorganized and had to get a job (for which they bought him a laptop to
soften the blow) -- he qualifies. He just finally got a building and has been
nurturing his plant to about 50 people. I suspect that the agenda was
predetermined before we got there.

My wife and I are hurting financially -- we had to live on credit cards for a
year and a half while reconfiguring our lives to break off from the church
staff track. We may have ate out a bit much, but we purchased no big ticket
items, bought nothing that we didn't deem as a need and not a want. With Bible
College degrees, all we are qualified to do is hourly jobs in childcare and
retail. So we ended up in debt. And debt brought debt -- some legit, some from
our own folly and foolishness. And now, while we're digging our way from out
under, it is by no means an easy row to hoe to get free! The light at the end
of this tunnel is quite a ways off. We had been contemplating chapter 7 until
God delivered us quite miraculously.

Everyone, at the moment I am one confused unit. What we are doing isn't new or
even cutting edge -- why can't I get these people to see? I realize that my
vision of church, if it ever caught on, would end the incorporated church and a
"professional" clergy, and is therefore a threat to them. But I really don't
think they understood enough to get all that, and what chance is there that
what I do will alter anything on a District level? And I realize that on paper
I'm no bargain -- I'm a 38 year old ex-youth pastor working in the Campus Food
center. Sometimes life is all hard edges and bright, glaring lights. Why should
they think what I see can become reality?

Yet I will trust in God. I am not having a crisis of faith, or doubting the
vision God has given me. Just because it isn't happening now doesn't mean it
won't. I just need you guys to pray, and to help me bear a burden. And I
realize that some of you have experienced harder things than this. I have
myself. This is NOTHING compared to what happened in our last couple of
churches. Given the choice to be here doing what I'm doing and working at a
Willow Creek or Saddleback, I'd choose here every time. But this has become
hard for me to shoulder alone, and from what I have read here, you are a group
that prays.

This was the Psalm for my Morning Office: "Into your hands I commend my spirit,
for you have redeemed me, O Lord, O God of truth... I will rejoice and be glad
because of your mercy; for you know my affliction; you know my distress... I
have been forgotten like a dead man, out of mind; I am as useless as a broken
pot... But as for me, I have trusted in you, O Lord. I have said, 'You are my
God.' My times are in your hand; rescue me from the hand of my enemies, and
from those who persecute me. Make your face to shine upon your servant, and in
your loving-kindness save me." Psalm 31

I'm not looking for pity. I am not even asking for advise, or for a solution -
-- I'm pretty sure God has that department under control. I am looking for you
guys to pray for me.

Blessings to you all,

TC

Howdy, all!

Thought I'd break from the war thread to report another type of war experience
I had last night in meeting with the District Director for Church Development,
my Sectional Presbyter, and Sectional Missions Rep. Yet I hesitate being this
open and honest about my situation -- but ya have to start somewhere, right?

My wife and I had been District appointed home missionaries by the old Church
Development guy. After last night, we are not under any classification -- they
couldn't understand how the community of faith that I am seeking to gather can
be called a "church." More that once I could hear the frustration in their
voices as they tried to "classify" me.

After 16 months here in Amhest, they wanted to know what progress we had made,
if any of the "models" we had learned in Bootcamp had helped us to form a
group. This was not a get-to-know-you session that we had expected, it was a
full on evaluation of my and my wife's ministry. I told them that we didn't
believe in the church being a managerial model. That we wanted to plant and
water the Word in relationship and no-strings friendship while God gathered in
His harvest. That from this group, based on friendship, the gifts given by the
Spirit for each to serve each other would determine the "structure" of what our
community would look like.

It was an interesting experience watching the face of the Church Development
guy. There was not one time, at any point, where we connected. There wasn't
even a flicker in his eyes. The presbyter, whom I had counted on as a
sympathetic friend, who had very generously supported me in my earlier efforts,
basically stood back and said very few words at all. The other guy, a young
pastor (actually, they were all young, no one over the age of 45) tried to
piece together what I was doing, but kept coming up with Chi Alpha, the AG's
college ministry. You see, they try to minister "relationally."

The District had been paying our GSLs for the past year -- we were church
planters who both worked full time jobs where we were called and qualified. As
of last night, we no longer qualify. However, the guy that planted a church in
the next town over, who received salary from the District until last year when
they reorganized and had to get a job (for which they bought him a laptop to
soften the blow) -- he qualifies. He just finally got a building and has been
nurturing his plant to about 50 people. I suspect that the agenda was
predetermined before we got there.

My wife and I are hurting financially -- we had to live on credit cards for a
year and a half while reconfiguring our lives to break off from the church
staff track. We may have ate out a bit much, but we purchased no big ticket
items, bought nothing that we didn't deem as a need and not a want. With Bible
College degrees, all we are qualified to do is hourly jobs in childcare and
retail. So we ended up in debt. And debt brought debt -- some legit, some from
our own folly and foolishness. And now, while we're digging our way from out
under, it is by no means an easy row to hoe to get free! The light at the end
of this tunnel is quite a ways off. We had been contemplating chapter 7 until
God delivered us quite miraculously.

Everyone, at the moment I am one confused unit. What we are doing isn't new or
even cutting edge -- why can't I get these people to see? I realize that my
vision of church, if it ever caught on, would end the incorporated church and a
"professional" clergy, and is therefore a threat to them. But I really don't
think they understood enough to get all that, and what chance is there that
what I do will alter anything on a District level? And I realize that on paper
I'm no bargain -- I'm a 38 year old ex-youth pastor working in the Campus Food
center. Sometimes life is all hard edges and bright, glaring lights. Why should
they think what I see can become reality?

Yet I will trust in God. I am not having a crisis of faith, or doubting the
vision God has given me. Just because it isn't happening now doesn't mean it
won't. I just need you guys to pray, and to help me bear a burden. And I
realize that some of you have experienced harder things than this. I have
myself. This is NOTHING compared to what happened in our last couple of
churches. Given the choice to be here doing what I'm doing and working at a
Willow Creek or Saddleback, I'd choose here every time. But this has become
hard for me to shoulder alone, and from what I have read here, you are a group
that prays.

This was the Psalm for my Morning Office: "Into your hands I commend my spirit,
for you have redeemed me, O Lord, O God of truth... I will rejoice and be glad
because of your mercy; for you know my affliction; you know my distress... I
have been forgotten like a dead man, out of mind; I am as useless as a broken
pot... But as for me, I have trusted in you, O Lord. I have said, 'You are my
God.' My times are in your hand; rescue me from the hand of my enemies, and
from those who persecute me. Make your face to shine upon your servant, and in
your loving-kindness save me." Psalm 31

I'm not looking for pity. I am not even asking for advise, or for a solution --
I'm pretty sure God has that department under control. I am looking for you
guys to pray for me.

Blessings to you all,

TC


------- <><><> -------


Date: Sat, 26 Jan 2002 02:02:08 -0500
From: AOM Canada
Subject: Re: [NTCP] Re: Wounds Upon Wounds

Hi TC!

>Howdy, all!

WOW!

>Thought I'd break from the war thread to report another type of war experience
>I had last night in meeting with the District Director for Church Development,
>my Sectional Presbyter, and Sectional Missions Rep. Yet I hesitate being this
>open and honest about my situation -- but ya have to start somewhere, right?

TC, the use of the war metaphor is completely warranted. It is a war and very
real and serious war. The problem is the Church as a whole has not had a clear
understanding or revelation of how serious it truly is. This paragraph brought
back flashbacks! The hairs on my arm stood up!

I want to AFFIRM YOU TC in your openness to trust people on this list. You
have laid yourself bare before us, and I truly admire and respect that and I AM
AND WILL PRAY FERVENTLY FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY!

>My wife and I had been District appointed home missionaries by the old Church
>Development guy. After last night, we are not under any classification -- they
>couldn't understand how the community of faith that I am seeking to gather can
>be called a "church." More that once I could hear the frustration in their
>voices as they tried to "classify" me.

As I shared with you before TC, unless they get a revelation from the Spirit
and they are quickened in their inner man, they just won't get it! So, as my
wife has encouraged me, I now pray for them to have revelation knowledge of
what is going on in regards to house church and church planting. It is up to
the Lord to reveal it to people, not me. I am just the 'skin' of what house
church looks like, and He is the substance!

>After 16 months here in Amhest, they wanted to know what progress we had made,
>if any of the "models" we had learned in Bootcamp had helped us to form a
>group. This was not a get-to-know-you session that we had expected, it was a
>full on evaluation of my and my wife's ministry. I told them that we didn't
>believe in the church being a managerial model. That we wanted to plant and
>water the Word in relationship and no-strings friendship while God gathered in
>His harvest. That from this group, based on friendship, the gifts given by the
>Spirit for each to serve each other would determine the "structure" of what
>our community would look like.

The problem with the institutional church and institutionalism as a whole is
that it is governed by vision, attainable and measurable and sustainable goals.
If you don't meet the criteria, then you ar evaluated and the project either
continues or shuts down. Here we have human means soiling the Kingdom! They
did not understand you because they did not have a Kingdom mindset. Brother,
you are best off where you are now, as painful as it is. Now you can fully
throw yourself into Christ and see Him deliver you and restore your resources
and finances, with no strings attached!

>It was an interesting experience watching the face of the Church Development
>guy. There was not one time, at any point, where we connected. There wasn't
>even a flicker in his eyes. The presbyter, whom I had counted on as a
>sympathetic friend, who had very generously supported me in my earlier
>efforts, basically stood back and said very few words at all. The other guy, a
>young pastor (actually, they were all young, no one over the age of 45) tried
>to piece together what I was doing, but kept coming up with Chi Alpha, the
>AG's college ministry. You see, they try to minister "relationally."

Brother it is all about revelation, revelation by the Spirit to hearts that
truly want to know. Sometimes we are not quiet enough to hear the Lord and
discern what He is saying. These men need a revelation of what God is doing.

>The District had been paying our GSLs for the past year -- we were church
>planters who both worked full time jobs where we were called and qualified. As
>of last night, we no longer qualify. However, the guy that planted a church in
>the next town over, who received salary from the District until last year when
>they reorganized and had to get a job (for which they bought him a laptop to
>soften the blow) -- he qualifies. He just finally got a building and has been
>nurturing his plant to about 50 people. I suspect that the agenda was
>predetermined before we got there.

I decided long ago...no financial support. Only bi-vocational. We will work
and we will build only with what the Lord provides. We have 40 adults, and 8
kids. We are learning to become family and that takes time and a lot of
resources. But when you are building relationship, it does take time, and it
takes vulnerability to be intimate. This is a stage that we are in the midst
of right now. Deeper intimacy for everyone!

>My wife and I are hurting financially -- we had to live on credit cards for a
>year and a half while reconfiguring our lives to break off from the church
>staff track. We may have ate out a bit much, but we purchased no big ticket
>items, bought nothing that we didn't deem as a need and not a want. With Bible
>College degrees, all we are qualified to do is hourly jobs in childcare and
>retail. So we ended up in debt. And debt brought debt -- some legit, some from
>our own folly and foolishness. And now, while we're digging our way from out
>under, it is by no means an easy row to hoe to get free! The light at the end
>of this tunnel is quite a ways off. We had been contemplating chapter 7 until
>God delivered us quite miraculously.

Like you the Lord delivered us from financial affliction! He freed me from the
bonds of tithing and freed my in the teaching of giving out of a joyful heart.
If we live by grace we should be able to give about the tithing principle (old
covenant).

I can declare to you that My wife and I signed our mortgage today and next week
we take ownership of our first house! The Lord delivered me from debt and gave
us a great credit rating. Do not despise the place you are in brother! Embrace
it and let the Lord show you what He will do in and through you if you yield to
Hiim.

>Everyone, at the moment I am one confused unit. What we are doing isn't new or
>even cutting edge -- why can't I get these people to see? I realize that my
>vision of church, if it ever caught on, would end the incorporated church and
>a "professional" clergy, and is therefore a threat to them. But I really don't
>think they understood enough to get all that, and what chance is there that
>what I do will alter anything on a District level? And I realize that on paper
>I'm no bargain -- I'm a 38 year old ex-youth pastor working in the Campus Food
>center. Sometimes life is all hard edges and bright, glaring lights. Why
>should they think what I see can become reality?

TC, it is not your job to make them see. They see what they want to see. Like
you said, they knew why they came to you. They had their minds made up.
Brother, "Do not despise your youth! Do not let others detract you from who
you are in Me, says the Lord!"

At your age I was wrecked in a toboggan accident and almost lost my life only
to truly find it. You my friend are at the edge of your destiny. Embrace the
Lord with gladness and He shall guide you and direct your paths. Do not worry!

>Yet I will trust in God. I am not having a crisis of faith, or doubting the
>vision God has given me. Just because it isn't happening now doesn't mean it
>won't. I just need you guys to pray, and to help me bear a burden. And I
>realize that some of you have experienced harder things than this. I have
>myself. This is NOTHING compared to what happened in our last couple of
>churches. Given the choice to be here doing what I'm doing and working at a
>Willow Creek or Saddleback, I'd choose here every time. But this has become
>hard for me to shoulder alone, and from what I have read here, you are a group
>that prays.
>
>This was the Psalm for my Morning Office: "Into your hands I commend my
>spirit, for you have redeemed me, O Lord, O God of truth... I will rejoice and
>be glad because of your mercy; for you know my affliction; you know my
>distress... I have been forgotten like a dead man, out of mind; I am as
>useless as a broken pot... But as for me, I have trusted in you, O Lord. I
>have said, 'You are my God.' My times are in your hand; rescue me from the
>hand of my enemies, and from those who persecute me. Make your face to shine
>upon your servant, and in your loving-kindness save me." Psalm 31
>
>I'm not looking for pity. I am not even asking for advise, or for a solution
>-- I'm pretty sure God has that department under control. I am looking for you
>guys to pray for me.
>
>Blessings to you all,
>
>TC

Thanks for sharing TC. I WILL AND AM PRAYING FOR YOU!!!!!

Blessings, Sam


------- <><><> -------


Date: Sat, 26 Jan 2002 07:51:58 -0800
From: jferris
Subject: Re: [NTCP] Re:
Wounds Upon Wounds

AOM Canada wrote:

>Hi TC!

Dear TC,

I want to say amen to all that Sam has written, and prayed!!

Perhaps just a couple of elaborations.

1. Where employment is concerned. Walking by faith does not mean walking in
presumption concerning financial income or the provision of others. It is very
possible to walk by faith and still be employed. We need to walk it out in a
way that is reproducible, and the fruit of our ministry should not be
unemployment or presumption. Please understand that I do not say this as any
kind of rebuke, at least not a rebuke of you. I say it only because it needs to
be said, and your story makes a very relevant context in which to say it. I'm
63, doing heavy timbering, Post and beam and log homes. Do I long to be "full
time" of course. But I know that God can make that happen in a moment. and I
want it to be God, not my presumption. As it is, I have work to invite others
into, so that we can have time together while gainfully employed. I have
nurtured both spiritual sons and daughters, and fellowshipped brothers, even
received from fathers in this context. It is a good one. You can get to know
each other much better doing something together than in a meeting.

2. Abraham, left Ur of the Chaldees, in search of a heritage, not an audience.
For Abraham, the stars of the sky were embodied in one son, Isaac. Don't be
afraid to pour the best you have into only few or even just one. After all Paul
said, "I have no one like Timothy..." It is quite possible in your generation
for one person to embody the stars of your sky. Make the investment. It's worth
it, when its according to a promise. That is to say, it's worth it when it's
God.

3. We "went to church on Sunday", and met in our home for about 25 years before
moving south. There were seasons of unspeakable glory, relationship, community,
worship, and love. There were also seasons of devastation, and even despair. In
the The Lord if we think we have "arrived", it's probably the wrong place. I
think it was David Duplessis who said to me, "Jesus is the way, and there are
no station stops". Just keep pressing on, allowing The Lord to make changes in
the itinerary from time to time, and you won't be left in a visitation of the
past. It all dies as soon as we begin to rely on what "worked last week",
rather than The Holy Spirit. Life tells me that there are seasons, and that one
season prepares the living for the next season. I would love to live in Spring
and Summer, But I know that there are just as many Falls and Winters. I've
learned that it's all right, because it's all God. As Bob Mumford might say,
"Thank you for avoiding the temptation of putting plastic flowers in your
window box".

As for the manhandlers, you have heard that the beast is coming, already many
beasts have come. Don't let man do a number on you!

Lord, Bless TC! Come and fellowship with Him, don't let him miss any portion of
the good that you are working for him in this present season of His life with
You. Make him a servant to the praise of your glory, and give him a taste of
his Romans 8 inheritance even this side of the resurrection of his body, so
that he knows that he knows that he knows that he is Your son, not
institution's son, and Lord give him the stars of the sky. In Jesus Name,
Amen!!

Yours in Christ,

Jay

I'd like to stay for more, but have to "go to work now".

New Testament Church Proliferation Digest V2 #21

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