Harris Update

Hello friends,

Let me first say how excited I am about the recent change in the blog.  Even though I haven’t posted or replied, it has been really fun to read, think, ask questions and pray about these questions we are posing to each other.

That being said, I would love to talk about where Jen and I have been for the past few months.  Life has been a sweet adventure in Christ for us recently.  On the way back from Steve Rawls’ bachelor weekend, Mark and I got into a long discussion about theology and where Jen and I find ourselves right now.  I am starting to understand what a great place God has us in.

Let me explain:  Right now in Botetourt, we find ourselves in a three way pull of ideas about faith, worship, and how to live the best life in Christ.  Here are the 3 groups that are influencing us right now:

1. Young Life Commonwealth Region.  The staff in our region leans strongly towards a Calvinist point of view.  We have guys like Mike Cramer, Jim Cunninham, Matt Garrison, Tim Toy, etc.  who have been on staff for a long time.  They are very wise.  Our region is very knowledge oriented.  Studying scripture and reading books is held in high regard.

2. Area Leaders.  A new bible study has started here that most of our leaders are going to on Tuesday nights.  Their emphasis is on listening to the Spirit and following His lead.  This group is much more charismatic than I am used to.  They want to be obedient to God’s voice.  Often times they will have a time of prayer and listening, and then go out in Roanoke and speak to people about Christ who they feel God is leading them to talk to.

3. Church.  Jen and I are members of a conservative Southern Baptist church.  The emphasis of our church is obedience.  Do we know our eternal destiny?  If so, does our life reflect that?  If we are following Christ, does our life look like we are following Christ?

It seems to me that all three of these groups are encountering Christ in their own way.  I would not argue that any of them do not know Him.  However, it is amazing to me how different they are.  The hard thing is, they all believe that they are experiencing Christ in the best way.  When we first realized this, it was hard for us.  We felt like each group was pulling us in their own direction.  Each group wanted us to go their way.  However, the joy we have found is that God has us right in the middle.  We are learning that studying and learning is important.  We are learning that listening to the Spirit is important.  The Spirit is alive inside us!  And we are learning that obedience is important.