Simple/house church has been one of the great opportunities for me to step out of the boat at the word of Jesus in order to follow him with greater abandon.
God spoke clearly to me at the beginning of this journey, “I will not give you a blueprint to follow.” His meaning was clear. He was bringing me to a new dependency on him that would require listening and following daily often without knowing where it would lead.
As Monte Dugger writes: “Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Follow me.’ To where? He did not elaborate. But this was actually the point. The life-journey of a disciple is less about what will happen, where we will travel to, and how we will meet our end, but more importantly about who it is that we are following.”
The house church journey has been a lot of simple re-discovery of what God’s word says about life, church (ekklesia), and ministry along with a willingness to walk out these Scriptures with fresh eyes. This often meant leaving the boat of the traditions and religious culture I was comfortable with. This often meant walking in ways that did not make sense from a worldly point of view. But always, always God met me in these times of faith and risk-taking confirming the truth and power of his word.
I received this email recently from someone stepping out of her boat that describes this well:
We have stepped away now from what we’ve lived so long……the American Church Christianity culture… Our hearts are being fed and the Holy Spirit is keeping us in peace and with expectation of what lays just ahead. We know the outpouring of the Spirit in these last of the last days will empower us and all the remnant in all our lack. We are waiting and dependent, for apart from Him, we can do nothing of any lasting value.
I am challenged to continue to walk each day with this kind of dependency on God and not settle into new ways of remaining in the boat.
I try to continually encourage myself:
- Listen afresh to God’s word every time I read and meditate on it
- Allow his Spirit to speak and impress upon me what he is saying without any preconceived notions
- Converse with God and respond with a ‘yes,’ as an intention to put into practice or step out at his word
- Trust, rest, and enjoy his leading and presence
When we follow him in such a way is there uncertainty at times? Yes. Are we fearful at times? Yes. But do we discover the joy of the spiritual journey and the faithful intimate connection with Jesus? Always.