Let's face it: I tend to see the world a little differently to most. This is as true for the things of God as for the way I read books & deal with history. It probably accounts for some of the difficulties we have had both in fitting in to a church & establishing our own. Generally people like what they know & are comfortable with & on the whole Christians tend to be at the more conservative end of the scale. I fit there ~ & I don't fit there. Mostly I can't be bothered going to all the trouble of explaining some of my choices. They don't affect anyone but me.
I can remember saying ~ more than once to a variety of people ~ be careful whose teaching you sit under; there is an impartation.... I know this is true. A congregation tends to hold important what the ministry leadership holds as important. So I was fascinated to find the first person the Lord brought us was a wonderful lady whose primary gift is preaching. Theologically she & I are like peas in a pod. You have NO idea how unusual this is. Charismatics are a dime a dozen. Meditative charismatics are as rare as hen's teeth! She fitted into the church structure the Lord had given us as though it were a glove tailored exactly for her hand!
She is a thorough researcher. An extraordinary prayer warrior. Extraordinary in her faith. I knew we were blessed beyond measure to have her on our side. And she has been incredibly faithful. Week after week she has turned up, just the 3 of us & preached to an empty room when asked. In the time it's been just us I have learnt she won't roll her eyes if I say, I feel the Lord is saying this...leading thus...is doing this... Indeed more often than not she will concur, because the Lord is saying the exact same thing to her! We have learnt to listen & trust each other. This is important because there are things the Lord just doesn't talk to me about. Probably because certain things cause me to promptly vague out.
This week the Lord spent most of the week talking to me about the Passover. Mostly He was just gently reminding me of the flow of things but He also made sure I had grasped that I was dealing with Holy Objects ~ the same as the Communion elements & that we needed to be reverent. A good thing too as I nearly lost the plot when I saw how many we actually had for Passover! I know you are thinking, well, that's really not so very many...& of course you are right but most of our island churches peak at 1/2 a dozen to a dozen people so that was major. What the Lord told Bee was that from Easter on He was going to gradually grow our numbers. Her face was a study when she saw her prayer answered on Friday! On Sunday we began our service with just the 3 of us again. *sigh* Then they came. One. Two, three, four! Everyone who was at the Seder was back!
You've got to be hardy to endure one of our services. The Lord hasn't blessed us musically so the praise element is light on & very different because we have no singers either so the whole lot of us use the praise as a prayer platform. Then John uses that to lead in prayer & what he uses is the scriptures. John being John will often pray through a whole chapter of the bible. Not for the faint~hearted, no. Then the reader will read more scripture. Then either Bee or I will stand & proclaim ~ & we have both a teaching & a prophetic mandate so we can pack an awful lot of punch into our 35~45 minutes. Then John closes by praying more scripture & I put on some music. We are heavy on the word because Faith comes by hearing, & hearing by the word of God!
If you've read here long enough you know I have a thing about getting the knowledge of God into people's heads because when the going gets tough that's what will anchor you in the storm! Resurrection Sunday is a ripper to preach! There is soooo much to choose from, so much to cover, so much to impart & when I get going I can talk really, really fast & say an awful lot in very little time.! What the Lord gave me to speak on was Christ our High Priest ~ oh, MAN!!! I love this stuff. Because you can actually see, in both Mark [14:63] & Matthew [26:65] the literal exchange of the old covenant for the new. You see a high priest's garments were woven from a single piece of cloth without seam, & double woven round the neck to prevent accidental ripping as a high priest who tore his vestments was immediately disqualified from his office....Yet here we see the high priest deliberately tear his garment & we know from later at the cross Jesus' garment was gambled for as it was woven from a single piece with no seams! From that moment before the Sanhedrin Jesus was operating in His office as High Priest! I get so excited by this stuff. I talk more fully about what happened here.
I've known this stuff for a while & so I was off chasing other bunny trails ~ but I forgot not all my congregation was there with me! lol Half of them promptly immersed into their iphone apps to check my references. I don't mind. In fact that is excellent! I don't say stuff unless I'm 100% sure but I like that they checked. It's important preachers are accountable for what they teach. And after we'd finished they rushed over to chat some more about it.
Impartations. I am so grateful that those the Lord is bringing are hungry for His word. I'm glad they are like the Bereans, not just sitting there like stuffed pigeons, but actively searching to see if these things are true. This will flow on to everyone new who arrives. The expectation has been set. I'm pretty crappy at the sit round the table over a cuppa chit~chat stuff. But if people want to chat about the word of God I am so there! Because if you know the truth, the truth will set you free & those who are free in the Lord, are free indeed!