Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Faith-No faith-Faith

Today's Link
Bears & Belles

Today's Saying
A person often meets his destiny on the road he took to avoid it. ~Jean de La Fontaine

Today's Picture
Confirmation at St. Mark's

Once upon a time in a little Midwest town a baby was born to a typical Lutheran family. Soon after he was born the baby was Baptized and named James after some relative or another. His parents weren’t much for going to Church but they did see to it that James went to Sunday School and then to Confirmation. He probably would have turned out like many Lutheran youth where Confirmation marks the end of their active Church attendance but something happened to James. He went to Bible Camp. He really didn’t go to learn about God but to chase girls and have fun. Lutheran girls are fun to chase and Bible Camp has lots of fun things to do. However at this particular camp something happened to James. He met Jesus. He met Jesus as a person not as an idea.; The meeting changed his life. It turned it upside down.
You could not keep him out of Church. He joined the high school youth group. He also found a group of kids that had had “ the experience” and met with them regularly. He was fired up for God. It was a wonderful time of singing, praying and growing in the faith.
The only downside is that he began to see that much of the congregation didn’t have “ the experience” . They were not saved. He knew, of course, that we salvation was by grace but he was coming to believe that holiness should follow. One was not saved by good works but if one was saved one should show good works in one’s life. People who didn’t go to Church on a regular basis were not saved.
After graduating from high school he continued to grow in holiness and closeness to God. He attended a local college, met a nice young lady and got married. After college he went to seminary in Chicago.
It was during this two years that the next life changing event happened. He got baptized in the Holy Spirit and he spoke in tongues. Little by little he came to believe this experience was a defining one for one’s Christianity. If you didn’t have “The Baptism” you weren’t in. It became for him the litmus test of true belief.
After two years of seminary he went to Finland to finish his seminary education there. He did this because he heard of the movement of the Holy Spirit in Finland both in the present charismatic movement and in the older Pietistic movement. While he was there two important things happened. He became a Christian Socialist and his wife taught him Spanish.
Completing all of his course work with flying colors he returned to the United States and announced to the Mission Board he was ready to be ordained and called to Latin America or South America. The Board was reluctant to accept his offer. He was anything but mainline Lutheran. He was almost a Pentecostal and to add to it all he was a vocal Socialist . But under pressure from a number of his friends who were ordained pastors his Synod President pushed the Board to ordain and send him. And they did to what they thought would be a perfect match. They sent him to Chili. Chili had a rapidly growing Pentecostal movement and a popularly elected socialist government. It was as if God had set up the call just for him.
At first everything was wonderful. His congregation grew. There were Baptisms in the Spirit. The congregation became known for helping anyone that needed help. They were the very center of God’s love. It was wonderful. It was great.God's Spirit was moving.
To be continued tomorrow

News from Pigeon Falls
The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal
Almost all of Pigeon Falls is now searching for Tommy UK and Tammy. Search parties are combing the woods around where Tommy’s crushed cell phone was found. But so far there has been no sign of them nor of a giant spider.
Over at Nancy’s Coffee Shop rumors abound. Some think the demon came back and vaporized them. Some think a giant spider ate them. Some think it has something to do with the man in black who is said to have been seen behind the Town Hall. Some are saying aliens in a spaceship took them away. One rumor is as good as another.
Tammy’s parents are sure she is dead and Tommy as well. But Tommy’s parents said they believed that of Tommy once before and even had a funeral and he wasn’t . In fact he showed up at the funeral. So they should not be so quick to write them off.
Eino thinks that the lack of blood, clothes, or bones rules out having been eaten by a spider. But the DNR man says nobody knows how this spider eats or what would be left. The good sign is they can’t find the spider.
The Tommy Club met without Tammy and Tommy UK and are doing their own search.

Wrap UP
It was a rainy day so I spent a lot of time on the computer. My sister called she is sending me my Aunt Doris's pasty crust receipe. Betty took Maggie for a walk after the rain. I visited all of my links. That took three hours. Now I need a breathing treatment.


Blogger anthonynorth said...

An interesting post. Looking forward to tomorrow.

1:28 AM  
Blogger Melli said...

Oh, at first I thought we were getting an Elf Tale today - but I think we're getting something MUCH better! Can't wait for the finish.
(this story sounds sO similar to someone else ... named John)

I feel so sorry for Tammy's parents. They must be beside themselves with worry!

4:27 AM  
Anonymous quilly said...

Hey! Who said you could leave a cliffhanger story?! Get back here! I'm sick you know. I might not remember that long. In fact, I had to reread yesterday's Pidgeon Falls NEws again today. Somehow I missed the crushed cell phone, but there is is, big as life. That's what happens when people who have fevers try to use their brains.

4:38 AM  
Anonymous Alice Audrey said...

The fan club will find them for sure.

7:12 AM  
Blogger Nessa said...

I have a feeling of trepidation. i need happy endings to both stories and I need it now. Man, Now I have another reason to stay awake at night.

8:46 AM  
Blogger Lone Grey Squirrel said...

I read this post with great interest. I look forward to the next episode. I am currently reading up church history especially the Reformation and the rise of denominations. A Lutheran Pentecostal is a good mix. I myself came to know the Lord via a Plymouth Brethren Assembly and have worshiped with them most of my Christian life but I have also had the privilege to have worshiped in Anglican, Charismatic, Baptist and Moravian churches. Regretably, the one time I tried out a Lutheran church, they were far from warm and inviting but I know that one church does not represent all Lutheran churches.

9:03 AM  
Blogger Family Man said...

Looking forward to tomorrow.

9:13 AM  
Blogger Baron's Life said...

I loved the story of James...can't wait to read the rest tomorrow.

9:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am wondering if this is our learning about Dr. John and Betty myself. I really enjoyed this and am looking forward to tomorrow's story. Thank you Dr. John

I'm gload that Tommy's parents aren't rushing to a conclusion. I think his powers will eventually save him and Tammy...

10:10 AM  
Blogger aims said...

Dr. John.

I'm not here everyday in the summer because white water rafting has started and I help my brother out as much as I can.

But I haven't forgotten Pigeon Falls and I'm catching up on the days I'm home.

Just thought I'd let you know.

11:38 AM  
Blogger Akelamalu said...

I look forward to the next part of the story.

12:36 PM  
Blogger A Lady's Life said...

Very nice story about a young man finding God. And it always happens this way when you least expect it.
And if it doesn't, there must be a good reason as well.
It is good to go and visit all churches and temples to find out what it is all about.

2:39 PM  
Blogger Jientje said...

Visiting all your links takes a lot of time, so true!
I'm sorry to hear it rained where you are. If it ius any consolation to you, it rained in Belgium too! Almost ALL DAY!! Some pretty heavy showers too!

3:32 PM  
Blogger Mama Zen said...

Can't wait to read the rest!

8:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ahhhh! You leave us hanging once again!
I met my husband at a church camp. There's a lot to be said for those Bible camp experiences. :)

You are a very kind and faithful blogger to visit all of your links. I try but often fail.

9:01 PM  
Blogger Jo said...

Oooh, a cliffhanger. I will be back tomorrow. :-)

10:22 PM  
Blogger Cindy said...

Arrgghhhh, don't DO that!!!! Guess there's one good thing about being off work- I can be here early to find out what happens with James. I'm wondering how he is related to you...And this was a most intriguing post.

5:08 AM  

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