As promised here are some observations from the very first talk we listened to at the New Staff Training conference down here in, at the moment, chilly Daytona Beach, FL. I have been very impressed by the quality and level of teaching we have received thus far, and it only looks like it will get better from here on out!
On Monday morning at 8 am we are beginning the two seminary courses that Campus Crusade requires New Staff to take; the courses are entitled â€“ Doctrine Survey Course and Bible Study Methods. Iâ€™ve just been looking at the notebooks, requirements and notes for the two courses and it appears that it will be a lot of work. So pray that I can get back in the â€œschoolâ€ mode, do well in the courses, learn with a humble heart and spirit, and not get puffed up by the knowledge I acquire.
Here are some thoughts about Marc Rutterâ€™s talk entitled – A Foundation for Ministry.
Obviously from the title of the talk you can gather the gist of where he was going, but his talk penetrated my heart to the element core. We opened the Bible to Jesusâ€™ famous sermon that begins in Matthew 5. We looked at verses 3-6:
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. (ESV)
Marc challenged us to ask ourselves 4 questions that emerge from these verses. His four questions were as follows:
1. Am I depending on God today or am I depending on myself?
2. Does my sin make me sad, or does it just make you made?
3. Am I gentle with fellow sinners, including myself?
4. Am I hungry and thirsty for real life or am I settling for cheap substitutes?
I will be straight up with you â€“ all four of these questions rocked me! He had us raise our hands with which one of the four questions challenged us the most and I couldnâ€™t pick one! I couldnâ€™t. There is a time within my walk with the Lord and life where i struggle with each of the four questions to different extents.
As Iâ€™ve been processing this talk over the past couple of days and praying about how God would apply it to my life, I have been praying that the heavy burden of guilt wouldnâ€™t be placed on my shoulders as I ask myself these questions, because they should NOT be asked in the spirit of guilt, but the spirit of FREEDOM, which comes through Christ.
Which of the four penetrates you to the deepest parts of your being? I encourage you to open Matthew 5 and ask God to move in your life in such a way where you will be moved to worship him in a deeper way than every before!
Well, I hope God has spoken to you through this entry! I will be posting a lot of the things that Iâ€™m learning in class and it is my prayer that God would use what I learn to bring you closer to Him as well! As I close this entry Iâ€™m going to include a poem that Marc concluded his talk with, enjoy! Be a Revolution!
â€œRun John Run. The law commands,
but gives neither feet nor hands.
Better news the Gospel brings.
It bids me fly and gives me wings.- John Bunyan â€