Like I mentioned on Facebook, through email, and in person, I’ve decided to take a year or two to pursue a Bible course called the Full-Time Training in Anaheim (FTTA), which is based in California, USA. I was raised in a Christian family, and I myself have been a believing and practicing Christian since I was about 11.
But what does that mean? What does it mean to be a “Christian”? Does a Christian never swear, never cheat, never lie, never steal, never covet, never sin, never give in to carnal desires?
Does a Christian always sleep on a bed this nicely made? (My roommate taught me how to make my bed like that and I’ve literally never been more inspired to make my bed than now)
If that were the definition of a Christian, then that makes no one on earth a Christian. Not even on my best days can I pretend to be anywhere near that definition of a Christian.
So what does it mean? I think the most useful definition of a Christian is this: a Christian is a believer.
Not just any believer, but a regenerated (having a new life) believer, believing that God came as a man in the form of Jesus Christ, to live a human life (just like you and me) and to die on the cross for our sins (fulfilling God’s righteousness and closing the distance between God and man), and then resurrecting and ascending to become the Holy Spirit, otherwise known as the life-giving Spirit, who is today indwelling all those who have believed and received Him.
The life of God we have received, works in us. At the speed of life. Just like some plants grow faster (bean sprouts!) and some grow slower (…durian trees I guess), so the life of God grows in each believer differently. Yet as it grows it makes us more and more into His image, having His likeness and nature. But this life also grows depending on how much we ALLOW it to grow.
What am I trying to say? Just this: I’ve learned, this past week, just to let God grow. As He grows, like a scab He heals every wound in my heart and in my conscience that I’ve let this world fester and infect. He grows and I feel things shift in my mind and in my heart, doors slide open and other doors close, pieces click into place. Sometimes He grows, and I fight it. I would say:
Lord, stop making me feel these things. Stop making me cry every afternoon, weeping over how far I’ve grown apart from You, how much of my life has become a bookshelf of anomalies and contradictions and hypocrisy, how much I have stopped letting the voice within dictate the life without.
But still every afternoon I’d find my right sleeve wet with tears, and I’d scribble in my diary every thought and prayer and feeling I had not expected, yet had always known.
So at the end of this week, my grand conclusion is this – I’m glad to be here. It’s been a detox of the sort that I didn’t know I needed. I’ve had time and space to think, and to consider, and to pray, and to confess, and to ultimately realize that I love the Lord Jesus, and I believe that there is something so much bigger than ourselves, so much bigger even than the activities we involve ourselves with, in church or otherwise.
There is something that has been hidden in God’s heart from the very beginning of time – even before that, in eternity past. And this something, God’s heart’s desire and eternal plan, stretches out into the future, as far as and even further than our feeble minds can imagine.
Sharing by T. T. (a trainee) from his enjoyment in the Full Time Training.