The more I connect with people, the more I realize that the idea of family and connectedness is central to the the heart of God in redemption. We have been redeemed by the Lord of relationship to be in relationship with Him and with one another. Of all the language of the New Testament, the most compelling, the most raw and in your face, is the “one another” passages, and in particular the “love one another” passages and their implications.
For many, and I among them, we have cherished the “home is my castle” mentality. This is not a negative, and even though it may appear to be an oxymoron, it is not. Our homes should be places of refuge, such as a castle, but our homes too need to be like an open garden, a place of welcoming and resting. Our homes should be “safe” places for people, and also a welcoming place for new people, new relationships.
Home is where the heart is. If our hearts are open to the Lord and His passion and compassion, surely we will yield to Him, and seek to open up our homes to new people, and new relationships, and the deepening and strengthening of existing relationships.
One of my concerns in the “house church movement” is the capacity to “ghetto-ize” and become separate from those relationships we had previously. I am seeking to remain connected with people I was once closer to, and also seeking to re-connect in some relationships that have become somewhat distant.
This year, I am seeking to be more open and more generous in how I live my life. When I have been hurt, rejected and wounded, I have sought to protect myself by cutting myself off from others. I look forward for the Lord to continue to renew relationships in my life, and I am thankful for the relationships the Lord restored and strengthened in 2005.
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The above blog post was written at a time when I was eclectic in my theological & biblical views and understanding. As of 5 February 2017 I am a functional cessasionist, that is, I believe the spiritual gifts, in particular gift like the vocative, prophetic gifts as well as healing & miracles have ceased. This means that my understanding is that at the end of the apostolic era, when the last apostle died (that would be John who was at Patmos & Ephesus, the author of the Gospel of John, Epistles of John & the Revelation of Jesus Christ, with his passing, the need for these particular gifts, the oracles of God given to men through the Holy Spirit, were no longer required. With the forming of the Canon of Scripture, there came to be no need for revelatory gifts. In fact in Revelation, John himself records the words of Jesus, “18 I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book. 19 And if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share of the tree of life and the holy city, which are written about in this book.” [Revelation 22, CSB]
God is sovereign, still heals, still manifests in the miraculous, but not at the whim or the discretion of men. We pray and ask the Lord, and then we yield and surrender to His will, echoing the words and the spirit of Christ, “Not my will but your will be done.” [Luke 22:42].
I embrace and hold to a Reformed understanding of theology & Christian living in the world. I have abandoned my other views entirely. I would be more akin to a Reformed Baptist (1689 Confession) type of Reformed theology. I used to be a continuationist (akin to John Piper) but no longer.
God bless you as you seek to know Christ and the power of His resurrection [Philippians 3:10 CSB].
In the eternal grip of Jesus,
Samuel M. Buick
29 January 2018
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