By Doug Kirk
In January of this year I was baptized here at the Manslick Road Church of Christ. If you would allow me to, I would like to tell you just what that has meant to me in the past few months. As a former Baptist, I had some-what of a religious background in that I attended church each Sunday and was a member of several committees. But something was missing. Something just didn’t seem right. It was almost a chore to get out of bed on Sunday morning to get ready for church.
One of the reasons for my dissatisfaction I believe was the fact that I had been listening to a radio program called “Bible Talk” which was sponsored by another Church of Christ in this area, The answers given to the callers peaked my interest and challenged my preconceived beliefs. After much study I attended several services and finally took the necessary steps to become a true Christian.
I have found a new joy and a new peace since making that decision (Rom 15:13). Someone once said that they would like to attend church every time the doors were open. That is certainly the way I feel now. I can’t get enough of it. Not only do I feel the joy, apparently others can see the change in me. Now if I can just tell them why there is such joy without their having to ask, I believe I will have begun to accomplish something for Christ (1 Pet. 3:15). I need to learn to take advantage of the opportunities to teach others when they come my way. I know that it is a matter of time and experience and the willingness to speak up which will help me in my walk.
Having studied various cults prior to being saved, I knew the many ways in which “religion” has perverted the Scriptures. After studying with the Christians here, I have an even deeper understanding of the subtle differences that denominational churches teach and how many people are turned away from the truth by their teaching. This is some-thing that troubles me and helps me to do my best to pass along the truth of the gospel of Christ when confronted with wrong teaching.
I do know that I can never return to what I once was. Even though the same old temptations are there, I know that I can turn to the Lord for help (1 Cor. 10:13). I must admit that once in a while I miss instrumental music, but each time I return to a service and listen to the beautiful voices that desire seems to fade more and more. I also know that I can turn to the people in this congregation for spiritual help or any other kind of help, and they will do everything they can to provide whatever is necessary.
My greatest wish is that others will find the true happiness that I have found. I intend to study and learn as much as possible so that I may be equipped to do as much as possible to show others what they may obtain through the Lord Jesus Christ.
Guardian of Truth XXXIX: No. 19, p. 4
October 5, 1995