I hung onto the Assemblies of God Church and I have been taking ministry classes with the Michigan District Assemblies of God. Currently, I am a credentialed minister and I am in the process of applying for my license to preach. In the midst of the past few years, I have served in many roles at the traditional church. I served as a sunday school teacher, a small group leader in the marketplace, an intercessor, an altar call worker, and a welcomer. I have also preached in the church setting and also at retreats. Around 2 years ago, I took on a staff position at a church plant as the Network Director which is a non-churchy title for an Evangelist. I networked with those in the church and those outside of the church. I led (and still do) a Bible Study with around 15 non-Christians in a coffee shop. Most of these individuals have never stepped foot in a church until that group was started. Most of them do not own a Bible. Half of the group believes Jesus is God but they are not ready to commit their lives to Him. The other half do not feel as if Jesus was God but they are looking for spiritual truth. I also served in many other areas at the church. On the weekends, I roamed the streets of the downtown area prayer walking and networking with the lost. I prayed that God would move powerfully in that land. I prayed that His Kingdom would come. I prayed that lives would be resurrected.
After twenty nine years of my life, I have decided that it is time to transition out of the traditional church for a season or maybe even for good. I am in the process of praying and asking God for specific direction in this area. There are a few reasons as to why I am taking this transition. First of all, God said, “Leave!” In a small way, I can relate with Abraham when he was told to leave his country. He was told so that he could be a blessing to others. I feel as if that is what God wants me to do. Secondly, when I first accepted the position as Network Director I felt it in my spirit that it was only for a season. Thirdly, God has instilled in me a different type of heartbeat for ministry. If I stayed in the traditional church I was in, I would remain paralyzed which would not be healthy for me. I can honestly say that I have a joyful expectancy for what God has in store. I stand before my God and I humbly commit this transition and my life to the Lord. As of right now, I am homeless when it comes to church and it is extremely out of the box for me.
I am currently in the position of wondering what church is. Over the past year, I have been asking myself several healthy questions when it comes to church.
What is church? Why do we have church? What is church suppose to look like? Are we in line with what God wants? If so, why are some churches shrinking and not growing? Why do we see so little salvations and life transformations? How are we to reach out to the unchurched, lost, and backslidden?
I do want to be part of the local body of Christ. I am just in the position of trying to figure out what is church and where do I fit. As of right now, I am in the midst of doing some research of house churches and praying about becoming part of one. House churches seem to be more and more on the rise these days. The house church looks attractive to me for many reasons. First of all, there is a great level of intimacy with those that gather and even with God. That intimacy leads to authentic and real relationships. That intimacy brings about a strong accountability and even discipleship. Secondly, house churches seem to have the freedom and a passion to be actively involved in the community without trying to get the “church name” out there. Thirdly, house churches have the freedom to be lead by the Spirit and not by mere programs. The traditional church tends to run by a minute by minute schedule which is ordered by one person. Fourthly, There seems to be a depth when it comes to the diving into the Word, prayer, worship, and even fellowship in the house church setting.
Just recently I ran across a quote that sums up how I feel right now when it comes to “church”.
“Acts 2 is a virgin church, unblemished by 2000 years of schism. It is a church at its most zealous, most spirit-filled, most connected, and most unified. If only church could be like it was during those times.” Mike Bishop
Oh, how I desire to be at that place!