Acts 4:23 (KJV)
“And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them.”
I have read this verse many times and have always been captured by the indirect message contained here.
Great emphasis is placed on being connected to the Body of Christ and recognizing His Church in its totality. I am the first to agree on the necessity of this and rejoice in the progress that has been achieved.
Having said this, however, I believe there is something we tend to miss, namely our uniqueness, and it's not to be taken lightly. Each functioning part of the Body of Christ has a purpose; to forget that is to cease to function by God’s design.
The long list of Christian groups and various denominations aren’t the expression of their founder’s desire to form something of which they could be the head. Sometimes we are made to think in that manner, but it just isn’t so.
I contend it has something to do with company. It’s an expression of a truth or a revelation, or maybe a neglected segment of mankind. It’s something God Himself wants to reveal to the world or do for the people He loves.
It reflects the progression of truth, line upon line, precept upon precept. If you carefully examine the multiplicity of Christian ministries this will become evident. My Pastor taught me if a new revelation destroys a previous truth, it’s a heresy.
We are all in the same body, but we aren’t all in the same company. We are all part of the human race, but not all in the same family. God has placed us in the body as it has pleased Him. This placement includes the Christian group we are a part of, it’s our company. It’s not just a place to get ordination so we can function with proper recognition with our government.
It’s the place where we are connected, the place where what God has called us to do is understood. It’s the place we can go and tell our story and receive strength to continue.
In the verse we are examining, Peter and John had just been seriously threatened for preaching and healing the lame man in the name of Jesus. They had some second thoughts about proceeding so what did they do? They went to their own company and told their story. There among those who understood their mission and message, they were strengthened and received great Grace, wisdom, and continued lacking nothing. Had they sought advise outside their company their mission may have been understood, but the message may still have been questioned.
From its inception, FCF has been a ministry with a mandate. The Harrison’s weren’t looking for something to be the leader of. They were fulfilling a mandate. In obedience they birthed God’s desire, a family Church, a charismatic teaching centre, reaching the world. Many years later our company encompasses fifty two nations, thousands of believers, and a host of Churches who call it family.
Why am I writing this? First, to catch your attention and focus you on the fact you are important to us and loved by us.
Secondly, you have been placed here by God and we recognize that placement as God’s gift to our company. Because of this you will always be treated as family no matter the circumstance you find yourself in. You can always come to your own company and receive love, strength, and empowerment.
This brings me to my final reason for writing this. Family Church Conference will be in Ajax from November 13th-14th. For those who can stay, our guest speaker will be at Faith Family Church Sunday 10:30 am on the 15th. This is the annual gathering of your company.
Under God’s direction we are going to be blessed by the ministry of Jeremy and Sarah Pearsons. They will bring a message that is relevant to what God wants for us now. We will share what God has done nationally and internationally as we have fulfilled His will and walked in our purpose together.
Pastors, this isn’t just another ministers’ conference. It’s a Family Church Conference. I am asking you to promote FCC to your Church and bring as many as can come. They need to see the big picture and enjoy what you are a part of. You may have to put some of your local Church activities on hold that week and free up some time so they can attend. This is what families do when creating family functions.
Put up the posters, promote it in your meetings, and we will all gather at the Ajax Convention Centre.
See you at the family reunion!
Pastor Bill Annis, President, FCF Canada