C.S. Lewis once said, “Christianity, if false, is of no importance, if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.” I love this quote. In a world where to become a Christian in many places can cost you your family, career or even your life it is crucial to remember that Jesus invites us to “take up a cross and follow me.” In America, because of our freedom and prosperity we can be fooled into thinking that Christianity will not cost us anything. But it will. Jesus describes discipleship as a narrow way for several reasons, one of which is the difficutly that is part of following Him. In my own life being senstive to God’s Spirit has cost me dearly. In college I had to surrender my dream of becoming a Prosecuting Attorney and Judge someday to answer my call to the preaching ministry. After graduating from Seminary I felt called to go to a church that described itself as “struggling or dying.” It was not fun in the beginning but it was where God wanted us. And finally when I felt called to start a church from scratch I fasted and prayed to discern that I was to move thousands of miles to Fairbanks. This meant leaving my parents and sister’s family behind and embracing the extreme cold and darkness of the far north. Now I will tell you that God knows better than we do. In each of these instances what I viewed as sacrifice became wonderful times in my life. Today I cannot imagine NOT being a minister of the gospel– I LOVE IT! Next when we went to the struggling church in Indianapolis we got to participate in a turnaround and made some life long friends. Just one example, is that two of my sons have names that came from an older gentleman who became an adopted grandpa to us (Henry Clark Maudlin). And finally, despite the extreme weather of Fairbanks I love this place and it’s people. I cannot imagine ever leaving this town! Jesus is both challenging and comforting; he is the source of pain but also great joy!
Under His Mercy,
Derek Dickinson, Minister