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Blog titles & the problem

May 25, 2005

Well the scrubbing toilets got a lot of comments, Dee Andrews even e-mailed me privately to discourage me. Keith gave some good suggestions. I changed one of his to “Believing Thomas” not doubting Thomas or you could take it as believing what I say.

I want to go ahead and write about this problem that has been hanging around in my mind for several weeks. I actually have several things that I would like to write about but God has blessed me with so much work that it is hard to find the time. God blessing me with work is worthy of a blog of its own.

The problem is related to a camp that I support with blood, sweat and tears. I have left all of those at the place. I love it as a sacred place. It is by earthly standards a complete and undeniable dump. A lousy crummy facility. But it is getting better.

The problem is not the facility.

I quit going to camp when I needed it the most as a teenager. I know it to be an incredible place of love and acceptance. It is the highlight of the year to many children and adults alike. If you have ever been to a Christian camp you know what I mean.

My point is not to talk about the greatness of camp.

Our camp attracts youth from several states and obviously many churches. Due to an action (I assume it is true, but don’t know it to be) at one congregation involving 1 woman and 1 worship assembly. We find ourselves with some calling for something referredd to a marking false teachers. I expect it to take the form of something similar to The Christian affirmation that has caused so much debate.

One member wants “a discussion of board members and directors who may hold to teachings contrary to sound doctrine, esp. in regards to instrumental music, women’s leadership in assembly worship or praying and teaching in the presence of men, and even the essentiality of baptism.”

He goes on to say “It is a sad day in the church for these matters to have to concern us, but we have a responsibility as leaders to make sure no one of the above hold to error on these subjects or will teach or practice them at camp, or hold them in belief. How can they give the kids a clear, firm, correct Bible answer and refute false teachings when the kids ask their questions if they don’t believe the truth, even though they may not practice their error at camp.”

He then later said this regarding anyone from two particular congregations,” I intend to oppose their leadership and plead for their resignation. I feel strongly about this. I do not intend to be contentious, but that is the way I will vote come decision time. I do not wish to bind my opinions in our leadership on the board, but I will stand with the Scriptures and what has identified us as a church over the years, and particularly among us who are involved at” [camp]

The last statement of standing with Scriptures AND what has identified us as a church over the years, (emphasis mine) is what bothers me.

I think it shows a concern for maintaining orthodoxy. It is denominational in mindset. It is saying “I want to preserve our way of doing things”.

I am not interested in that. If it gets in the way of God’s work.

I am interested in following Jesus.

I am interested in following God.

I have received another letter with very similar thoughts, but it added that the founders of camp would be rolling in their graves.

To be honest my understanding on that has grown over the years. Didn’t God promise it would?

I expect there to be some motion for everyone to sign on to some list of dos and don’ts that bothers me. Any list made by man is both too long and too short. Plus, who gets to make the lists. The no kitchen folks, what about the KJV only folks, maybe the no clapping folks, maybe the baptism is not necessary folks, maybe the …. You get the idea. Depending on who you ask, you will get a different set of do’s and don’ts. That is just how it works.

It also bothers me because I feel that anyone, including me, that decides to think or re-think anything will be pushed out. It doesn’t matter what conclusion you come to. It was suggested that any director approached about instrumental music must be able to say it is wrong. No waffling, certainly no saying its ok. That was his example not mine.

Again the only document I really want my name on is The Book of Life.

In preparing part of the curriculum for my week of camp (we are studying James, last year was Galatians) I have been amazed at chapter 3. The chapter is a lesson to teachers to watch their tounges and use Godly not manmade wisdom.

verse 17 says their teaching is Pure, peace loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy, and produces good fruit

So wise teachers or wise Christians who control their tongues
1. Are peace loving instead of being divisive.
2. Are considerate of others instead of being seeing things only their way
3. Are submissive instead of having to have it their way
4. Are full of mercy instead of always wanting to bring others to justice
5. The produce students who are good fruit instead of students who are bad fruit

In case you couldn’t tell. I am scared. Scared that my brothers may be hurt. Scared that I may be run off. Scared that anyone that doesn’t fit into a circle drawn by ??? then they have no place at camp.

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