The pillows were very downy and squished down to thinner than I’m used to. I finally got to sleep about 12:00. Unfortunately I couldn’t sleep past 6:00 am., so I managed to survive on six hours of sleep for the day. I took my Bible and notebooks outside for a while to spend time with the Lord. It was a little chilly, but refreshingly so. After a while of looking at the 1 Chronicles 17 passage I’m studying, I determined I needed to write some more down, so I set up the laptop computer back in our room, while Daniel and Nathanael went down to breakfast.
About 8:00 I myself breakfasted in the lounge with James A. from Georgia, Austin T. from North Carolina, and Leah R. from Georgia. It’s inexpressibly joyous to fellowship with these people! We come from all over but are as close as family.
A little past 9:30 the first session began. Jabe Nicholson is only here Monday and Wednesday this week, so we had three sessions in a row from Jabe. The first session was an introduction to Local Church Truths, concentrating on what God’s big idea for the church is:
- man and God in intimate fellowship!
- The church should be marked by supernatural love and supernatural power. We are to live lives so different that there is no way people can refute the existence of God. What an awesome responsibility!
The second session concentrated on culling church principles from the Acts, looking to what the early believers did before we look into the epistles. This was also insightful into the fundamentals that make up a church.
- Patient waiting on the Spirit of God—so often we just run ahead with our ideas instead of really relying on the Holy Spirit.
- Occupation with Christ—the early church was willing to die for the name of Christ. Everything they did was in His name, and everything they did therefore reflected well or evil of Christ.
- Loyalty to the Word of God—they were faithful to show from the scriptures why Jesus had to die, and to point out Israel’s and everyone’s sin which separates them from God. The Word of God was their only authority; nothing was from their own opinions.
The third session involved some small-group discussions about hypothetical situations in which churches could begin. For instance, a remote tribe gets a hold of a Bible in their own language and is converted through reading God’s word. What do they do now? How will they form the church? They won’t be preprogramed with Western ideas of Church. This session, though long, was very informative. Very eye-opening about how little we need to “do church.”
For supper, we went up I-81 a couple exits to Ryan’s, a buffet restaurant. There was great food and fellowship. I got photos of all the tables of the BUCKIT Week attendees (below are most of them). We finished supper about 8:00.
David, Jeremiah, Mike A., Jonathan, Austin
Jason, Andrew H., Shane
Sharon, Katie, John, Nathanael, Josiah
Mike and Jess R., me, Tami and Ozzie
Tiffany, Elspeth, Leah
Jeremy, James, Joe-Paul
Charlotte, Megan, Anna H., Elizabeth
Bethany, Arielle, Joyce, June
Craig had given us an assignment of a passage of Matthew to read and make observations about, so I tried to do that in the lounge. It proved too noisy to be fruitful, however, and I went back to the room to work on it. That worked! It was about 10:30 by the time I was done observing, and I was tired enough to go to bed, but lonely enough to return back to the lounge to see who was around and what was going on.
I found Nathanael, Daniel G., Rachel and Anna H., Bethany, and Austin talking. It wasn’t long before Justin found and joined us and immediately wrested control of the conversation! I smile to think of it, because Justin is an extreme extrovert, and loves finding connections between other people to facilitate conversation. He’s so funny and inspiring. He makes me want to step out of my reserved shell.
After a good long time, it was down to Austin, Nathanael, me, Justin and Daniel Geesey. Justin, having no sisters good-naturedly grilled Nathanael on what it’s like to have eight sisters, and what they are like. That kept us up until 12:30. I slept for six hours again, getting up this morning at 6:30.
[writing about Tuesday, July 24]
It’s almost time for the first session now, so I’m going to pause for now and pick this up later.