A gracEmail subscriber in the Bible Belt writes that the church with which he is affiliated is “very traditional and stagnant.” He wants to be “free” — but he is also “concerned about God’s authority and abiding in it.” He asks, “Can you give me any advice?”
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“God’s authority” states that believers in Jesus are “free” from law, from human tradition and from the condemnation of others. That means that we are “free” to serve Christ, to live in the Spirit, to walk in love, to imitate Christ in selfless faithfulness to the Father. (See 2 Cor. 3:17; Gal. 5:1, 13; 1 Pet. 2:16). God’s truth makes us “free” in this sense — it does not hinder true spiritual growth or impede godly works (John 8:31-32, 36). My advice is to feed on the Word of God; be constant in prayer about every aspect of life. Make God your closest partner and Christ your dearest friend. Jesus promised to all who “abide” in him that he also “abides” in them (John 15:4). Your spiritual life flows from union with Christ by faith.
I would be surprised if there are not others in your own congregation who also long for greater spiritual depth and richer life in the Spirit. You might wish to ask God to lead you to those people — he has a remarkable way of answering such prayers — and you can encourage each other. You do not need to abandon your regular church meetings; instead pray that God will be present in them. Say, “Lord, send revival; let it begin with me.”
I believe you would find encouragement in my article entitled “Power from On High”. Remember that “God is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us,” for which we give him all the glory (Eph. 3:20-21).