Number six. May 05, 2021. Welcome to Welling: for your spiritual well-being and your ministry overflowing.
For a long time, RREACH has been bringing pastoral leaders from all over the world for a season of training in a context, in a content, and in a conviction that they need to be healthy in their personal ministry and their personal lives. It’s not an easy project, because they’ve got to jump through all kinds of obstacles in their own countries, but also in their entry into the United States. We carefully select them from dozens of applications, and we only have room for about 25 of them every year. Not everybody comes into the United States from friendly countries. So they have to meet many, many standards and many criteria. As they go to the embassies of the United States in their lands, they establish their authenticity. They verify their identity. They even have to prove their morality. They also show that they have full intent not to stay in the United States.
Finally, they’re given a visa. That should have been enough, but the visa actually has a statement which says, it is not a guarantee of entry into the United States. It is a condition, but it’s not a guarantee. And so we pray that they get the visa. That, itself, is a hard obstacle to conquer. We rejoice when they get the visa, but we still hold things tentatively. We book their tickets. They fly across time zones. And when they land into the U.S., my colleagues are waiting on the welcome side of immigration at the baggage claim, not knowing whether they’ll be allowed into the U.S.
Most often, they are given a permit. A visa is seen and approved and an immigration stamp is given to them. But sometimes, especially for those who come from difficult places of the world, they’re taken into a side room to be checked and rechecked, questioned and requestioned. Fortunately, RREACH has a 100% return rate, and we have established some credibility with the immigration people, that we’ve not lost any and they’re not sent back into their own countries.
That point of immigration is an important one for our lesson today. When the apostle Paul says, “I have been crucified with Christ,” that is the point of immigration. There’s a jurisdiction in which he lived, as well as the apostle Paul, Cephas, Peter. That jurisdiction governed with its own laws the citizens inside its territory, inside its authority. But there came a point when a person understood the provision of the Lord Jesus in grace, in the cross, and the death and the resurrection, where human beings could not merit His favor and keep control of their spiritual salvation or life.
And their trust, implicit trust, a reliance on the Lord Jesus as the only God who saves them … they went through the point of immigration. Their passport to salvation is now stamped. The old jurisdiction is gone. And on this side of immigration, of salvation, the Trinity welcomes them. Yes, they have some baggage. That will all be worked out by the rest of this verse. But Galatians 2:20 says, “I have been crucified with Christ.” With respect to my old life, it’s gone. We are now into a new jurisdiction, into a new zone, into a new administration. We would consider that in the next talk. But, welcome. Welcome to a new Welling, a new structure, a new system, a new strategy of life. You’ve gone through immigration. Now the secret of your Welling is His indwelling.