The first church field the Lord led me to was seven miles back into the woods in Springfield, Louisiana. I had never lived in the country before so it was quite an adventure. Once I got things set up in my office, I called the phone company to set me up a phone line. When I introduced myself to the phone guy he asked me this question, “What in the world is an Italian doing pastoring a Baptist Church?” I immediately knew what he meant. You see, I was raised in an Italian community in Bryan, Texas. In that community if you were born Italian, you attended a church with a certain denominational culture, period. It wasn’t up for discussion.
Now to be clear, my intent is not to be negative towards any church or denomination. As a matter of fact, I received two principles from the childhood church I was raised in that have served me well throughout my life’s journey. First, respect God’s Word. Second, fear the Lord. Both of these principles have steered me well.
My intent is not to be negative or positive toward any church or denomination. My intent is to promote Jesus. For Jesus saves and only Jesus. The question he raised that morning, “What in the world is an Italian doing pastoring a Baptist Church?” gave me the opportunity to share my faith in Jesus with the phone guy.
I am so glad that 44 years ago one of my employees in the store I was managing took the time to share his faith in Jesus with his boss. On that Saturday night I came to realize that no church can save me from the condemnation I deserve from a Holy God. Nor could my works save me. For only Jesus saves!
“Follow Me and I will make you to be fishers of men.” -Jesus (Matthew 4:19)
As we follow Jesus, might we, too, share our faith in Jesus with those the Lord brings into our path. For no church or denomination nor amount of good works can save them. Only Jesus saves.