We continue to report testimonies written by our Irvine-sent and Irvine-related trainees regarding their enjoyment and experience in the FTTA for the encouragement of all the saints.
I’m so sorry it has been a while since my last update. Today we had an Irvine sent and related breakfast and it was so sweet and encouraging to see some of the brothers and full-time serving ones as “representatives of the love and support” from the saints in Irvine.
Something that was shared was how there are hundreds of trainees that come to the same place to be in the same environment, schedule, and under the same regulations, and yet we all have our own unique, customized training that ultimately serves to bring us all to Him. There is light to expose who we really are, then there is more light revealing who He is. By seeing such a stark contrast – how we are short in every way and how wonderful our Lord Jesus is, we have no other way to go on except to cling to Him. This will ultimately result in our becoming a part of His enlarged, corporate expression. It was a great encouragement to see that we are now in this process. We have our individual experiences of being drawn by Him, and then we run after Him with one another.
As all the trainees went around and shared what their highlights of the term were, I’ve come to really appreciate that each of our experiences are not only or our own personal growth and spirituality but for all the members. Our being in the training, where we are being constituted with the truth, learning to minister Christ in our work, experiencing Him in our daily living (in many, many ways), is all for the Body.
When someone would ask me why I’m going to the “Bible school” if I’m not going to be a pastor or missionary, my response was that I was going for my spiritual growth and Christian pursuit just because I knew that was the “Easy answer to give that would stop them from questioning my choices. But that is so shallow and untrue! Actually, all of our experiences with the Lord are for the Body. There is just an incredible amount more condensed into two years of the training.
In light of this fellowship, I realized that my updates don’t really update you all on how I’m actually doing…So I’m in my third term out of four and you would think each term I would become a better person. Well, that is definitely not true…I might have thought so at some points in my first two tweets because I never got into arguments or huge disagreements. I got along with mostly everyone and I was just having a pleasant and enjoyable time for the most part. But actually, I’ve come to realize that actually the old Kristie was and is still there.
This third term I was brought to my end (in many ways) but recalling those times does not give me a bitter or sour taste. It really led me to open to the Lord in those situations because I had no other choice. I had to learn that I was the one at fault in all of those experiences and that all the thoughts going through my head were just excuses to vindicate myself. It exposed me to see how narrow, small, cold, hard, and/or black my heart is. There were many times I would turn to the Lord realizing my heart was in such a state, but all I could do was pray for Him to make more in my heart.
I repent many times to Him how I have not kept the place tidy/warm/nice for Him while He has to find a way to make home in it…not sure how scriptural that is, ha ha…Anyways, that didn’t sound very positive, but I promise it was really so releasing and sweet t realize that I’m terrible and wretched. I can’t make it, but there is Someone in me who can (sorry that was very vague).
Enjoyment from classed: There was a LOT I enjoyed from classes. Second year classes are amazing. I have so much to say about them but I’m running out of time :( Hopefully I can send them out n my next update!