Circa 2015 – 2019
After my husband and I left the first mega church we worshipped at for many years, where the Senior Pastor “disowned” those who had left, we continued to attend weekly services at another Church where our teenage daughter wanted to go. Besides wanting to hear what she is being fed, I felt that it is important for us to continue to attend weekly church services. To me, corporate worship is biblical and has its purpose and significance. Somehow, worship touches a different dimension when we do it together, as one body of Christ.
To their credit, this Church does it very well.
We also attended a weekly cell meeting for their business people, contributing to their building fund faithfully until one day, V stopped me. My husband felt awkward about it and decided he will continue to give a smaller sum from his end.
All that came to a stop when, acting on a complaint, the leaders were arrested and investigated for fraudulent use of millions of dollars of church funds. The key pastors, a board member and some staff are now serving a jail sentence after fighting the case for many years. My husband was totally disillusioned this time. Many of our cell members, some early members of that Church, left, sad, angry and dismayed.
After this, we have no choice but to go on a personal journey with the Lord. My husband continues to attend a weekly Bible study course for men, which he joined several years ago. We tried visiting other churches but could not find a place to settle in, as much as we would like to.
I sometimes lament about that. But each time the Lord will softly whisper:
“Foxes have holes…”
And I can only sigh weakly, taking comfort that He knows exactly how I feel as written in Luke 9:58 (NIV): “ Jesus replied, "Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head."”
Despite all that, God knows I still love the Church, as it is the body of Christ, maybe because I had been forewarned by Him. Somewhat bewildered, and tired, I felt no animosity towards the Church, only the Lord’s sadness.
V said to me:
“There is no perfect church, no perfect preacher and no perfect message.”
He then showed me a jigsaw puzzle and I understood it immediately.
Each of us holds only one or a few pieces of the whole picture of God’s big plan and design. So no one can claim to know or have it all. Yes indeed, we all know only in part. So, no preacher or church, or any one of us, is ever going to be perfect and none should think that only their message, their call or their vision is truly inspired by God for all and is completely flawless.
If we do, then our day of reckoning will come.
Honestly, now when I go to Church, all I desire is to worship God with the body of Christ. I do not go to be entertained. I do not go for the preacher or the message. I worship with my all and humbly listen to the sermon with an open heart as I hunger for God’s word.
The Holy Spirit helps me to discern what I hear from the pulpit to guard against deceit or misinterpretation of the word of God. I listen to the message, but hear from the Holy Spirit. I call it my “Channel V” ☺. I continue to take notes during the sermon. On some occasions, I am thrilled to hear the same Rhema word being revealed to the preacher that V has also shown me.
I follow the lonely path that the Holy Spirit has led me on but I respect and treasure all that I have learned from my mentors and pastors, past and present, just like how Joshua respected Moses when he had to take over the march into the Promised Land.
From time to time, I meet up with them and it is always an insightful and delightful time. I feel blessed that God has given me so many godly and wise teachers. Even now, after my Church era, there is so much more to learn, outside church walls.
V tells me:
“A teachable spirit is a humble spirit. “
I pray that all of us in COBS will remain teachable all the days of our lives.
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