1) Seeing my parents, and getting to hang out with my Dad (we had a great talk)
2) Being restored to membership in the ARPC of GR. See my attached letter of repentance.
3) Spending another week at the Eshelman’s – great hospitality!
4) Spending the week with my brother and getting to taste all of his good eats! Go to culinary arts school! You are a great cook. We had some good talks too.
5) Looking at houses, thanks for taking us around, Nate.
6) Hearing an excellent sermon on the Mediatorial Kingship of Christ, Thanks Rev. Lanning.
7) Getting my butt kicked at Super Scrabble by Adam and Leah.
8) Apples to Apples – Hilarious!
Thanks GR folks for the fun and fellowship!
15 July, 2007
Dear Session and Congregation of the ARPC of Grand Rapids,
As you are aware, my wife, Tammy, and I intend to move back to Grand Rapids, Lord willing, sometime after the beginning of next year. I am writing this letter to repent for my former behavior and to take the opportunity to explain my absence.
It has been 6 years since I left the flock here in GR (June, 2001). At that time I believed that the Lord was leading me out of the ARPC of GR and into the RPNA. I had desired to see the manifestation of the catholicity of the Church ever since Rev. Lanning taught me about Reformed Confessional Christianity; at the same time I had concerns about the doctrine and practice of the ARPC of GR.
I left because I believed that the RPNA had the model to promote such apostolic unity, and therefore not all of my original intentions were bad. However I did sin against the Session and Congregation by not using the means that the Lord has ordained to work through my concerns. While I do not regret the experiences that I have encountered in these last 6 years, I do sorrow over the way and reasons for which I left you all. I have transgressed the 5th commandment, 6th commandment, and our Lord’s direction in Matthew 18.
I repent for not taking the right steps and meeting with the Session.
I repent for murmuring against both the Session and Congregation, instead of praying for you and with you.
I repent for having unnecessarily and unlawfully separated from you. By this action I promoted discord among brethren in the Body of Christ.
I was also guilty of pride by believing that I was wiser than you, and to my fault, that you did not know how to promote the peace, purity and unity of Christ’s Church.
I was guilty of frustrations and impatience against you. We all had matured in the faith together, yet I did not rejoice in your gifts and growth in grace; rather I judged you for what I perceived to be a lack of corporate reformation.
I ask you to forgive me, and request that you would pray for my further growth in doctrine and practice.
Today, though Tammy and I may be closer to understanding biblical principles of unity and separation, we still have more questions than answers. This is our conviction, that it is vital for the faith and maturity of the members of the Body of Christ to be in a local Church where the doctrine of the gospel is taught and embraced, the ordinances of God administered, and public worship performed in spirit and in truth.
We desire to become members of your particular body and are committed to performing mutual duties with both the court and the congregation.
We look forward to talking with you all about our testimony of God’s mercy toward us, and how He has humbled us. If you have any questions about this letter or anything else, please contact us. We covet your fellowship.
May God’s grace and peace be with you all,
-Shawn (and Tammy) Anderson