This year at the summer college training in Champaign, Illinois there were 205 attendees, including 141 students and 64 serving ones. In the various sessions we dove into the "Revelation of the Mystery" in the book of Ephesians. The training was of three morning sessions which prepared us for the main burden in the evenings.
The first session was on the enjoyment of God in fellowship. The trainees were helped to see that every day, our need is to have a personal and affectionate relationship with the Lord. Through exercising our spirit to pray the Word back to the Lord, we can contact and absorb God.
The second session was on the human spirit revealed in the book of Ephesians. The trainees learned that revelation is altogether a matter in spirit. We need to receive revelation in our mingled spirit to see that we are being built into a dwelling place of God in spirit. Our spirit needs to be strengthened so that it becomes the spirit of our mind. We need to exercise our spirit and be filled in spirit.
The third session was on practicing the twos or threes. We realized that to run the Christian race, we need companions with whom we can pursue the Lord with. This requires us to practice getting to know one another and praying for one another. Ultimately, this is so that we could be a normal fruit-bearing branch, preaching the gospel and shepherding and perfecting the new ones the Lord has given us.
All the above prepared our being for the evening session, the revelation of the mystery in the book of Ephesians. The trainees saw that God’s economy is to head up all things in Christ; we need to be headed up in Christ. Also, collectively, we the believers are God’s masterpiece. We all are gifts of Christ and all our experiences are for the building up of the Church. The culminated in the greatest mystery of all: Christ and the Church. The Bible is a romance. God desires to prepare us to be His bride. This bride in Ephesians chapter five is the warrior in chapter six that fights for God's interest on the earth today in opposition to Satan. Such a warfare is spiritual, not against flesh and blood, and can only be successfully fought by saints praying with one another in the Body and for the Body.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, all the trainees prepared individual points to corporately speak a message on Thursday covering the human spirit in Ephesians. Their preparation was strong and led them to appreciate digging further into the truth and speaking it clearly to one another. The students were very encouraged by this exercise and desire to do it again next year. Some even requested to have two prophesying sessions like this next year.
Finally, the trainees were sent out in twos or threes during two of the afternoon activity times to practice speaking this mystery, God’s plan, and His economy to the students on the University of Illinois Champaign campus. We had meaningful conversations with seventy-six people and thirty-one prayed to receive the Lord! Sixty-seven desire further contact. Everyone was so encouraged by the response of the students on some very hot summer days. The trainees testified that whether they prayed with someone to receive the Lord or got rejected, their hearts were enlarged for man. When asked if they want to do this again next year, there was a very strong AMEN!!
Praise Him for what He did in all the trainees! We all can testify that the Lord opened our eyes to see the revelation of the mystery. To Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus forever and ever. Amen!