Like most things in my life - I feel a need to explain myself and why some of my blogs seem so far out there. Stick with me...
The last four years have been trying to figure out who I am, where I have been, the glorious God I serve, who He created me to be, and trying to unpack the stupefying truths in the Word. I am not who I thought I was and am not bound by who people have thought me to be.
My salvation seven-years-ago was an astonishing, life altering, awe-inspiring, overwhelming experience and it was all packaged up in a box full of zeal. Ministry, CFNI and life happened and I realized that much of what I was taught, and truly believed, was not what I was finding to be true in the Word.
The amazing God I serve has called me out. He has chosen me for His purposes and His will. Saved by grace. Lacking any form of goodness I did not choose Him. An amazing revelation has resulted in a freedom I could not fathom. A gracious, adoring, merciful God chose me, and chooses me, in the midst of my sin and nothing I do can stop Him.
The freedom that I have found has made me cling closer to the cross. I sin because of my depraved nature. I don’t need anyone or anything to show me how to sin – I do it quite well on my own. I have come to realize that apart from the saving grace of Jesus I am filthy and drowning in sin.
We are all depraved and no one who hears the gospel will ever come to repentance and faith without an inner quickening that only God can impart (Eph. 2:4-10). Jesus said: “No one can come to me unless the Father has enabled him” (John 6:65, cf. 44; 10:25-28). Sinners choose Christ only because God chose and moved them to it by renewing their hearts.
I once thought that if I just prayed a little more, read my Bible a little longer, danced and lifted my arms in worship, shared the Gospel one more time and didn’t drink, cuss, or lust that I could win God’s approval. I missed the sermon that told me, that through grace, I already had it. I missed the sermon because I hadn’t heard it preached until two years ago.
God has placed me and my family in the most amazing church, and has used our pastor to show me the depraved nature of man. While I am grateful for my experiences in the ministry and at CFNI, I have had to work through most of that theology to find that I do not agree.
J.I.Packer eloquently explains my thoughts towards the charismatic church in the following:
"Evangelism and theology for the most part go separate ways, and the result is great loss for both. When theology is not held on course by the demands of evangelistic communcation, it grows abstract and speculative, wayward in method, theoretical in interest and irresponsible in stance. When evangelism is not fertilized, fed and controlled by theology, it becomes a stylized performance seeking its effect through manipulative skills rather than the power of vision and the force of truth. Both theology and evangelism are then, in one important sense, unreal, false to their own God-given nature; for all true theology has an evangelistic thrust, and all true evangelism is theology in action." As you read my blogs I hope that you are able to identify with me as I attempt to work out my salvation. ("Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. " Philippians 2:12-13)