This past week from Monday through Thursday I attended the 24th House Church Conference for Pastors at a church in New Jersey. The House Church Conference is a forum for pastors who have previously attended our House Church Seminars and are currently leading or preparing to start house churches to gather and encourage one another, present case studies, and learn about our Life Series Bible studies. This was the first time I attended. I clearly saw the passion in each participant and felt that the house church is becoming an inevitable force for the future.
For me, the case studies of several pastors were most memorable. They came from churches that have been running house churches from 4 months to 3 years. All of them are doing their best to impart the house church spirit in their churches in spite of resistance. One of them gave a tearful testimony of how, even though his church is still weak (they are a small congregation of 30 people and have only 4 house churches), he wrote in the Sunday bulletin: “If you have already accepted Jesus as your personal Savior, please go and serve a weaker church” and insisted that people not bring believers to his church. Hearing their testimonies, I could not help but wonder, what is it about the house church that makes these people willingly sacrifice and pledge their lives?
I think it’s because they’ve found, at long last, a banner to hold and wave. In their hearts, they must have desired to do ministry that makes God happy. In the past, they served with all their might, not knowing what exactly to do, and growing in discontent the whole time. Now they have discovered a model of right ministry. And because they’ve found the right direction, they willingly discard what they have previously built up and take every risk to pursue the house church. I could feel that they look up to Seoul Baptist Church with unparalleled affection and expectations.
We must realize that our church is not just for us in Houston. When we plan and decide on church directives and policies, we should not limit ourselves to the considerations of our church and congregation, but broaden our outlook and think in terms of how it will affect the future course of the house church. God has placed our church in a leadership position. We must always remind ourselves of the importance of that duty and remain faithful servants of God.
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