So, it has been a while now that I have sat back and reminised about my years in TN. When I arrived in the south as a long haired hippie yankee; I was immediately struck by the church covered streets of the south. Every where I looked I saw churches. Big churches, small churches, white churches, brick churches, traditional churches, contemporary churches…lots-o-churches.I remember thinking that I was out of place. For so long I was in the minority to an exponential degree. Not only was I a christian, but I was a protestant! At one time the percentages were that Catholics made up 90% of all religion in Maine. The last 10% was EVERYone else. I have never seen that number substantiated by anything other than my high school experience but I can believe it.
Here I was in TN without any idea of how to defend myself against crazy rednecks who didn’t know the war was over! (Luckily I only ran into one and I quickly let him know I was born in GA so take it easy on me) With churches on every corner I started to live the life that I had never realized existed. Bible bookstores…wait the whole store is Christian? The Christian section in music stores is more than Michael W. Smith and Petra? I soon learned that Jesus was cool here and I just needed to relax and enjoy the ride.
I met some good people down there. Some of them I even have the opportunity to connect with on occasion thanks to facebook and the like. I am saddened by what has happened in my church down there and I pray that God has healed everyone involved. Other people that I was friends with have gone on to great things and I pray that God would bless and lead them.
That time in my life had ended when I started to feel a deep longing to minister to my homeland. I moved back to Maine to find exactly what I had left. This time however, I want to do something about it. Through my experience through EE and the new XEE (ask me about it) I am ready to help plow the fallow ground as Hosea says and reignite what used to be J. Edwards stomping grounds. I do not want to be like the south…they have their problems associated with their ‘spiritual affluence’ however, I do want people to meet THE Jesus and get THE salvation that He and only He offers.
We have been known as the black hole of Christianity for too long.
Thank you TN for igniting my fire…sack up gentlemen!