Today was the first day back home for me in fifteen years. For all that time I had wandered in the deadening throes of denominationalism. Never one to hold back on a challenge, I left my home church (Church of God, Anderson, IN) to see if I could make a difference in the United Methodist Church. I could not! And I found myself, like the prodigal son, in the slop pin with the pigs asking, "What am I doing here? I had it so much better in my home church." So, I finally came to myself and returned home to the Church of God movement. It was a blessed day. There really is no place like home!
Many reasons could be given for why I left the United Methodist Church. But it really came down to one for me. With all the turmoil of a pending split in the denomination, I was unable to keep my focus on Jesus. The UMC has lost its focus on Jesus because it has forsaken the authority of the Bible for their own man-made rules. It has become so welcoming of everything in its beliefs that it stands for nothing anymore. Their own selves have become their gods, fighting among themselves to gain power and control over a failing institution. There is really nothing left of any significance to focus on when Jesus is cut out of the picture. So, I left the United Methodist Church denomination. I came out and separated from them. (2 Corinthians 6:14-18)
In God's Church there is holiness of life and unity among God's people. In God's Church the focus is always on Jesus. In God's Church the children's song is proved to be true: "Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so." In God's Church the Bible is the only rule of faith and Christ alone is LORD.
So, it's back to the blessed old Bible and the light of its Word for me. It's back to an emphasis on holy living, by which the Church comes to have unity. It's back to focusing on Jesus. And I've never found any church group that embodies these truths more than the Church of God movement. It's good to be home!