Do not conform

By Gilbert Owens - Contributing columnist

This may come as a shock to some of you but your church leaders are not God. No matter how smart and educated they may be, none of them are God. No mater how respected they may be in your church and community, not one of them is God. No matter how well they speak or teach, not one of them is God. No matter how much they try to control your lives and others, not one of them is God. And no matter how holy and righteous we may think they are, the fact still remains, not one of them is God.

God Himself, in Isaiah chapter 55, made it very clear, there is a major distinction between God and man. He said, “my thoughts are not your thoughts and neither are your ways, my ways.” God went on to say, “as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways, higher than your ways, and my thoughts, higher than your thoughts.

Believe me when I say this, but too many church leaders have made the mistake of unconsciously deceiving themselves, by thinking and believing that God thinks like I think or that the way I do things is the way God does things. And the worst part is, most churches have become completely delusional into believing and thinking, that the way their church functions and operates is the way God wants them to function and operate.

Some have forgotten what God said in I John Chapter 2. God said, “love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life, is not of the Father. It is of the world.

When you take a close look at the churches of the world, you have no other option, but to come to the conclusion that the church has become like the world. Churches sing like the world. Churches dress like the world. Churches extort money like the world. Churches use people like the world uses people. And churches even select their leaders based on what the leaders have done in the world.

God has given the church a special commandment for the church. He said in Romans 12:2, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may show what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.”

On the surface, it would appear that God is commanding the church and the believers in the church, not to act like the world. But a closer spiritual examination of the text, reveals that God is not talking about the entire world. He is only talking about your world.

In this verse, (Romans 12:2), the focus should be on your world, which is only comprised of, your surroundings, your community, your neighborhood and/or your city or town. In other words, God is telling every church in Sampson County, do not be conformed to the other churches in Sampson County, but be ye transformed away from them by renewing your mind with the truth of God’s Word. And by doing so, you will show others what is the good, acceptable and perfect will of God!!!

Sometimes God will reveal His Word to you, in such a way, to reveal to you whether you or your church is lining up with God’s Word. The church in which I Pastor is lined up with God’s Word and Will, simple because we have not conformed.

For example, we have real wine at every Holy Communion Service, because we have not conformed. We do not have a separate place for preachers to speak and a different place for congregants to speak because we have not conformed.

We do not have and will not allow so called armor bearers, to carry my water, to carry my bible, to pour me a glass of water or to be my bodyguard, because we have not conformed. We do not have special rules for what color robe to wear or what type of robe to wear. In fact, we do not have any rules for robes, because we have not conformed.

We do not have appreciations services or so called pastor Sundays, or any other money-making services, because we have not conformed. We have never had and will never have, as a means to raise money for God’s house, a bake sale, a chicken plate sale, a fish plate sale, a breakfast sale, a raffle ticket sale or any other kind of sale, because we have not conformed.

We only use oil as an instrument of healing and we do not use oil as a way for the Holy Spirit to come upon. Why, because we have not conformed.

Because we have not conformed, we have found favor with God. We are financially secure. The church as a whole and every individual is prospering. Because we have not conformed, we know God is using us to make the wise look foolish and the might look weak.

God just keeps on blessing us because we have not conformed to the thinking and ways of others. He will do the same for any church or any person who does not conform to man’s ways but is transformed into doing everything God’s way.

By Gilbert Owens

Contributing columnist

Gilbert Owens is a resident of Roseboro.

Gilbert Owens is a resident of Roseboro.