Adullams Cave

Saturday, February 25, 2006

From Linda with Love

The following is a recent post written by my friend and sister Linda who belongs to another e-group I frequent. I included it today because it comes from a place that reflects my own heart, but told from her experience it is much better than I could ever theorise. I particularly love the way her freedom does not compromise her love for others or her willingness to go where the spirit leads.

Hello friends,

I think fellowship with other believers is not only necessary, but irresistible. How, where, when etc. are all variable factors. This list is one form of fellowship, and I enjoy it immensely.

Right now I attend a small exclusive home group. I do not embrace their doctrines, nor do they embrace mine, yet I know God has led me to go there for now. I was raised in this group…and left in 1980 because of the legalism and exclusivity. Now, I’m there for a different reason. I still am able to glean beautiful things from our fellowship together, and my hope is that one day, a bridge will be built between us concerning our differences. In this group I am refused the emblems and the privilege of testifying or praying. I’m fine with that, since I know God has planted me in the group for HIS purposes.

I also go to a Pentecostal church…WORLD’S apart from the home group! Here I enjoy lively worship, a word of instruction (with motivation), and personal ministry is given/received when needed. I also meet in homes with women from various denominations and non-denominations for prayer, ministry, worship, warfare etc. Sometimes I meet with a group brought together for specific strategic prayer. This happens on an “as required or instructed” basis, and the people who come feel directed of the Lord. The group changes all the time.

I am not a signed member anywhere, but I am a member in the body of believers. Sometimes I call myself a Freelance Believer. Sometimes I enjoy fellowship and worship in other denominations as well, such as Baptist, Mennonite or Catholic. This diversity is awesome to me. I’m glad to be free from institutional and legalistic bondages. I am free to go wherever God would direct me, and stay as long or as short a time as He instructs. I am always welcomed wherever I go. (maybe only in my own mind…LOL)

My involvement in local church endeavors, such as a city wide effort to support a homeless shelter, is welcomed, accepted and respected. I’m good friends with several of our local pastors and my born-again experience is never questioned. I’m invited to minister with them as well and my personal ministries to others are prayerfully supported by them. None of the IC have burdened me with a need to become a signed member. All the advantages of membership are extended to me (except communion in the RC and the above noted exceptions in the small exclusive home group), with the exception of voting…..which is not a biggy for me anyway. My vote is always cast in the spirit!

I have never had a confrontation with any IC spiritual leaders (excluding the small home group I was raised in) regarding membership vs. non-membership or even concerning attendance. Lots of times I just don’t go. I don’t need their validation to determine whether or not I’m doing something right or wrong. God is sufficient. The discussion has just never come up. Is it because they don’t care? I don’t think so.

So, I don’t know….this is the way I live right now, and I love it. If God wants this to change….I will gladly do whatever He asks. I don’t feel pressured by the opinions of other people (even leaders), but I always welcome their insights. I don’t bring up the topic to people that I know are “hard-liners” for church attendance and membership in the IC. Maybe this is how God has directed them, and I don’t mind if they think poorly of me.

Please excuse my verbosity. I have written to simply say, “You MUST listen to God and do what He says, whether it does or does not agree with those around you.”

Sometimes He will direct you to do things that even YOU don’t agree with! LOL



At 8:45 AM, Blogger Bar Bar A said...

thanks for sharing Linda's thoughts with us! She sounds like an amazing woman who knows her purpose. I love that she goes to so many different places for fellowship and has unique experiences at each one. She reminds me of an NT disciple cruising around from church to church visiting with The Body. VERY COOL!

At 10:15 AM, Blogger Karen said...

Very cool....!
I think it's so wonderful that God has brought all of us together, from all over the world (!), who 'feel' that NT church thing that Barbara is talking about.
We are The Body!

At 3:29 PM, Blogger Simon said...

Yah Karen and barb, I couldn't agree more. We are all believers who are in some way trusting Christ for our salvation even though we may see certain things differently. Some things may even seem like we will never agree but if we can learn to be secure in Gods love and not worry where others are at, we can walk in liberty and love and have a good time doing it. If we wait until we all agree on everything doctrinally or biblically or in regards to faith we will be waiting one day longer than

At 4:19 PM, Blogger SteveW said...

Hi Simon, I tried to comment earlier but it went into blogdom limbo I guess.

Anyway, I think that Linda has a great attitude toward others in that she has been gracious enough to associate with them and avoid confrontations.

I was thinking about the statement that we "MUST listen to God and do what He says". That could be very true as long as we realize that it is Christ in us both willing and doing His will and that brings up another interesting consideration. Is he really in all of us, unbelievers included, and still performing all things perfectly according to His will.

That would offend a lot of fundamental thinkers because of the traditional thinking having to do with good and evil but I wonder just how much of our logic is twisted beyond, or should I say short of, God's way of thinking because of our legalistic thinking and there is a lot of legalist in us all.

Just some thoughts.

At 12:12 AM, Blogger Simon said...

Hey Steve, thanks for comments. I am sure he is in us working out his perfect will as we surrender in faith to Him. For me, I know what a difference surrender makes in a persons inward and outward life. For me, this surrender is also a gift and means a full acceptance that indeed he is God and in charge of all. What goes on in the rest of the world, particularly with unbelievrs, as far as I can tell is SELF-WILL run riot. God allows it for a time in accordance with his purpose, he limits it and curbs it so it works for the 'good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose'. For me at least and I can only speak for myself, the way a born again believer operates in the will of God is vastly different as someone who is not. Saul of Tarsus is a good example. All he good do functionally before he met Jesus is "kick against the goads." In Christ he wrote the larger part of the NT etc, etc. (I hope I understood your meaning in this Steve .)


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