Growing up in the church system I was always taught that the Preacher was the authority on everything spiritual. After all, they had been called and had gone to college to be taught about God and the bible.
I remember how impressed I was by preachers. If I had a question about the bible I just knew they had the answer.
As I got a little older, I became infatuated with some of the big name evangelists. I would listen to them, send them money and if at all possible, go to their crusades. I can remember thinking if I could only be like them. They were super-spiritual and knew all about God and had the answers to all the spiritual questions.
I thought that was the way to know God and be pleasing to him, by going to church, reading the bible and obtaining all the wisdom of the preachers and evangelists.
Growth in my understanding
Fortunately, I got to a point where I realized the preachers and evangelists were no more important in God's Kingdom than I was. They did not have all the answers and they were not super-spiritual like I had always imagined. I came to understand that people are people. No one is closer to God or more special to God than another. Yes, some are more knowledgeable due to more time reading, studying and experiencing life but no one is better or more important in God’s eyes than anyone else.
These days I do not put so much importance on what men and women say, it is just their opinion. They are humans like the rest of us. We can certainly discuss things and get insight from one another, but God loves each of us the same. He has given us the Spirit who lives within us to guide and teach us without the help of any human being.
If we believe the Spirit lives within us, why are we more interested in what another human says? Why not learn how to hear the voice of the Spirit from within rather than focus on the thoughts and traditions of men? When our reliance is on God, rather than on what other people say about God, then we are truly free to be God's children.
Jim was raised in the Methodist church and spent nearly sixty years in the organized church. He and his wife became dissatisfied with the way things were going and became very disillusioned the weekly service format. After several years of looking for answers and trying different churches, they left the religious system and have been living for God outside the walls of religion and traditional church. Jim believes that God loves all people and that everyone should be loved and accepted as is. Jim started writing a blog called Done with Religion where he talks about various topics of Christian living in non-religious ways. Jim and his wife live in the Columbus, Ohio area of the USA. They enjoy their family, traveling and meeting people from all walks of life.
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